Skip to main content

Full text of "Harvard medical alumni bulletin"

See other formats



: --?^. ■ ('.V'-' ---M .'-tf^ 

•i"! "^ '^^ .s 

■ ■ i".\-'f . 

■>■■ '-'x^V 


■ 4'.';-'-M', *S 

■ .'.-''■■' 

, , . ■'■ '..'-: ' .•>3t'.-;':?:'i,VVv--'i.1i 
• ^ ■J '-t. vi^iV^H;-:,*! 



l'l«-.«.«.c- n-*t- mil. r< >|>lic>ti< 
lic-iiriitK iiiipaii-i-il 





HMS Alumni 


Fellowships are available for graduates of Harvard Medical School 
to undertake a year of post-graduate study. The amounts av\/arded for 
stipends are determined by the specific needs of the individual. 

Moseley Traveling Fellowship 

Support for at least a year of postgraduate study in Europe. 

The Committee on Alumni/ae Fellowships gives preference to those 

Harvard Medical School graduates who have: 


demonstrated their ability to make original and meritorious contributions 

to knowledge, 


planned an innovative program of study which in the Committee's opinion 

will contribute significantly to their development as teachers and scholars, 


clearly planned to devote themselves to careers in academic medicine 

and the medical sciences. 


Support for research in the U.S. or abroad; not restricted to alumni. 
Directed to M.D. scientists who require further training. 


Although there is no specific due date, the Committee requests that 
applications be submitted not more than one year in advance of the 
requested beginning date. The Committee meets once a year in January 
to review all applications on file by December 31 . 

Information and application forms may be obtained from: 

Committee on Alumni/ae Fellowships 

c/o Sponsored Programs Administration 

Harvard Medical School 

Room 414, Building A 

25 Shattuck Street 

Boston, Massachusetts 021 15 


Autumn 1995 
Volume 69 Number 2 

Harvard Medical 



Cover photo by Jerry Berndt 


18 Pride and Prejudice 

by Bemadine Healy 

25 Reflections From the Edge 

by Jordan B. Fieldman 

28 Words to Live By 

by Rodney Taylor 


3 Letters 

10 Pulse 

Program for scholars in medicine, 
funds for Alzheimer's research, 
teaching physicians how to teach, 
Alice Hamilton postage stamp 

13 President's Report 

by John D. Stoeckle 

32 Twenty-five Years Later 

58 Alumni Notes 

36 In the Footsteps of Pioneers 

by Dora Benedict (joldstein 

63 In Memoriam 

William Reid Pitts 

38 Untold Stories 

by Stephanie H. Pincus 

64 Death Notices 

42 Are Women Different? 

by Crerald S. Foster 

45 A Qualified Success 

by Donnella Green 


Inside hmab 

Harvard Medical 

A L U M N 


In Jerry Berndt's photograph, the Alumni Day tent, suffused 
with morning hght, poses the right questions. Who will take 
these places, not only today but in the years to come, and 
who will be missing? What does tradition mean when it can 
be so solidly embodied in the ephemeral canvas, poles, and 
folding chairs of our annual rite? Is this an image open with 
promise, or is it somehow just a little ominous? 

The discourse of Alumni Day and Class Day was much 
occupied with these issues. The experience of women in 
medicine and at Harvard Medical School was once again at 
the forefront, as distinguished alumnae — Dora Benedict 
Goldstein '49, Stephanie Pincus '68, Bernadine Healy '69 — 
reflected on their sex's impending transition from minority to 
majority among the graduating occupants of the folding 
chairs. The changing representation of ethnic and racial 
minorities was less frequently discussed, perhaps because 
there isn't quite as clearly demarcated an anniversary to focus 
our attention, but Donnella Green '98 described the bitter- 
sweet ambiguities of being made to "represent" both women 
and African Americans in medicine. Gerald S. Foster '51 
reflected on "the natural superiority of women," to borrow 
Ashley Montagu's phrase, as candidates for admission to 
medical school. The tone of all these talks was one of guard- 
ed jubilation. 

That, too, was the tone of Jordan Fieldman's reflections 
"from the edge" of survival. Dr. Fieldman's folding chair 
might well have been empty, as he was diagnosed with brain 
cancer in his first year at HMS. Seven years later he received 
his diploma after battling both the reality and the prediction 
of bad odds (an interesting distinction as he discusses it). 

Rodney Taylor '95 stood up from his chair to speak about 
his own process of self-examination on the way to becoming 
a doctor. Taylor's and Fieldman's talks, different as they are, 
illuminate a small mystery: there's a good reason, if a 
metaphorical one, why sitting in those little folding chairs is 
so uncomfortable. 


William Ira Bennett '68 


Ellen Barlow 

Associate Editor 

Terri L. Rutter 

Assistant Editor 

Sarah Jane Nelson 

Editorial Board 

Melinda Fan '96 
Robert M. Goldwyn '56 
Joshua Hauser '95 
Paula A. Johnson '84 
Victoria McEvoy '75 
Guillermo C. Sanchez '49 
J. Gordon Scannell '40 
Eleanor Shore '55 
John D. Stoeclde '47 
Richard J. Wolfe 

Design Direction 

Sametz Blackstone Associates, Inc. 

Association Officers 

Stephanie H. Pincus '68, president 
Suzanne Fletcher '66, president-elect i 
Robert S. Lawrence '64, president-elect 2 
Roman W. DeSanctis '55, vice president 
Nancy A. Rigotti '78, secretary 
Arthur R. Kravitz '54, treasurer 


Kenneth Roland Bridges '76 
David P. Gilmour '66 
Katherine L. Griem '82 
Dana Leifer '85 
Sharon B. Murphy '69 
Gilbert S. Omenn '65 
Bruce J. Sams Jr. '55 
John B. Stanbury '39 
Lorraine Dudley Stanfield '87 

Director of Alumni Relations 

Daniel D. Federman '53 

Representative to the Harvard Alumni Association 

Chester d'Autremont '44 

Chairman of the Alumni Fund 

A. Clifford Barger '43A 

The Hai-vard Medical Alumni Bulletin is published 
quarterly at 25 Shattuck Street, Boston, MA 02 1 15 
© by the Harvard Medical Alumni Association. 
Telephone: (617) 432-1548. Email address: Third class postage 
paid at Boston, Massachusetts. Postmaster, send form 
3579 to 25 Shattuck Street, Boston, MA 02 115, 
ISSN 0191-7757. Printed in the U.S.A. 

William Ira Bennett ''68 

Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 



John M. Carey's attack on affirmative 
action (Letters, Summer '95) presents 
opinion as fact and demands challenge. 

First, he advances the notion that 
ethnic minority patients prefer doctors 
"of their kind as do... white 
Americans." That is more Carey's 
prejudice speaking than reality. In my 
37-year experience on Long Island, 
white doctors see many black patients 
and black doctors see many white 

Then Carey patronizingly worries 
about where "excess minority gradu- 
ates" will find enough minority 
patients. What excess? Minority physi- 
cians choose locales for practice for 
the same reasons whites do. Some 
blacks may be motivated to do the less 
financially rewarding work in the inner 
cities, but then so do some whites. 
Does anyone ask white doctors if they 
intend to serve "their own kind?" Did 
anyone ask Carey? 

Second, he argues that women 
physicians and the society that permits 
their training are wasting our time and 
money to satisfy "pride of graduation." 
If women doctors work 30 years 
instead of 40, so what? Would Carey 
really like to banish women back to the 
kitchen and the nursery? 

Third, Carey proclaims "current 
medical school admissions policy must 
inevitably displace equally or better 
qualified white male students from 
Harvard Medical School." This 
assumes that qualifications can be 
quantified solely in test scores. For 
years I have interviewed 
Harvard/Radcliffe college applicants, 
both qualified and not qualified. What 
I've learned is that test scores and 
grades are no guide to positive traits 
such as courage, determination, lead- 
ership, personal warmth or social 
responsibility, or negative traits such 
as greed, arrogance or dishonesty. Nor 

do test scores tell who can enrich the 
life of the class, thereby enhancing the 
college experience for everyone. 

Finally, Carey claims that neither 
he nor Harvard has any responsibility 
for redressing centuries of discrimina- 
tion against women or blacks. But dis- 
crimination didn't die with slavery. My 
own class (1952) graduated only three 
blacks and six women. In 1978 in the 
Bakke case, the Supreme Court used 
the Harvard model in its ruling that 
race could be a factor in the admis- 
sions process, just as being a football 
player, a musician, a farm boy or an 
alumni son could be a factor. 

As Justice Blackmun said: "In order 
to get beyond racism, we must first 
take account of race. There is no other 
way. And in order to treat some per- 
sons equally, we must treat them dif- 
ferently. We cannot — we dare not — let 
the Equal Protection Clause perpetu- 
ate racial supremacy." 

James S. Bernstein '52 

Annie, Don't Get Your Gun 

I must respond to the shocking letter 
authored by John C. Richardson in the 
Spring 1995 issue. He opposes the 
stance of Marian Wright Edelman, 
who has spoken out against the 
plethora of firearms in our society. It 
appears to me that Richardson has 
been quite selective in his use of statis- 
tics and citations quoted, showing 
clearly his emotional slant on the 
issues relating to guns and violence. 
My position is that the use of guns is 
directly related to the violence 
observed and felt in America today. It 
is my belief that lessening the avail- 
ability of guns to children and adoles- 
cents would be associated with 
decreased homicide and suicide in this 
age group. 

Here are some facts about firearms. 
In the age range of 15 to 19 years, 
homicides are associated with firearms 
82 percent of the time. Firearm-caused 
injuries account for $429 million in 
hospital costs each year in this coun- 
try. The total annual cost to this 
nation for injuries and deaths caused 
by firearms is estimated at $16.2 bil- 
lion. A study of patients treated at a 
trauma center in Washington, D.C. 
showed a 42 percent increase in the 
average number of bullet wounds per 
patient over a three-year period. A 
personal vignette: I recently provided 
medical care for a 14-year-old boy 
who is now quadriplegic due to having 
shot himself in the head with a gun, 
while showing off with some friends. 

Of course, violence is associated 
with many factors other than just the 
use of firearms; namely poverty, 
unemployment, hunger, illiteracy, 
inadequate and overcrowded housing, 
as well as substance abuse. That 
firearms represent an American public 
health issue is well stated in the article 
entitled, "Firearm violence and public 
health: Limiting the availability of 

Autumn 1995 


guns" (Adker, Karl P., et. al.J.-fM-J 271: 
1281-3, 1994). This article presents 
documentation of the adverse impact 
of guns in America. The authors sug- 
gest specific modes of addressing this 
public health problem, such as increas- 
ing taxes on firearms and ammunition 
and implementing a gun return pro- 
gram in local communities. Yet 
another aspect of gun abuse is 
reflected in drive-by shootings, docu- 
mented in Los Angeles by Hutson, et. 
al. ("Adolescents and children injured 
or killed in drive-by shootings in Los 
Angeles, NEJM 330: 324-7, 1994). After 
documenting the severe impact of 
these gun-caused deaths and injuries, 
these authors stated, "They constitute 
a major pubhc health problem, partic- 
ularly in the inner city." 

There is more than enough scien- 
tific evidence to state categorically that 
gun abuse in our country is a serious 
public health concern. It is my opinion 
that physicians and attorneys should 
together offer leadership in increasing 
controls over the production, distribu- 
tion, possession and usage of guns as 
well as the Hcensing of guns and gun 

Thomas C. Washbiitii '5" 7 

A Well-Rounded Specialty 

I wish to commend you on your 
Spring 1995 issue "Making Herstory." 
As a family practitioner, however, I 
must take issue with some of the 
premises in Ellen Schur's and JoDean 
Nicolette's piece, "Students Support a 
New Specialty." Schur and Nicolette 
claim that "As women's health special- 
ists, we would eliminate the need for a 
woman to see several physicians just 
for health maintenance, or to elucidate 
the cause of symptoms..." and 
"Currently, no single specialty trains 
practitioners in such varied aspects of 
women's health as colposcopy, assess- 
ment of depression, and management 
of cardiovascular health." 

In fact family practice does provide 
exactly that training. In my practice 
last week, I performed several colpo- 
scopies, treated vulvar condylomata in 
a pregnant woman, placed an lUD, and 
performed endometrial biopsies. I also 
diagnosed and began treatment for 
depression, hj^Dothyroidism, diabetes, 
hypertension and hyperlipidemia. I 
discovered a breast mass in a woman 
with a history of breast cancer; evalu- 
ated patients with abdominal-pelvic 
pain, menometrorrhagia, infertility, 
secondary amenorrhea and hirutism; 
and counseled many patients about the 
risks and benefits of hormone replace- 
ment therapy. In addition, I saw 
women for prenatal care, post-partum 
care and family planning. I also deliver 
my patients' babies, and perform 
Cesarean sections, tubal ligations and 
D and Cs. Furthermore, I care for my 
patients' newborns, who also become 
my patients. 

Since the locus of family practice is 
the family, I also see my female 
patient's partners and other family 
members, however "family" may be 
defined. This is done in one setting, 
instead of sending family members to 
different providers based on gender or 

age. Since my training included behav- 
ioral science, with a focus on family 
dynamics/family systems, I am able to 
perform short-term counseling with 
patients in the setting of their families. 
Of course, I consult and refer to spe- 
cialists when indicated, as would any 
other primary care physician. 

Women do need to be served bet- 
ter by medicine, from research to the 
clinical setting. While most seem to 
agree that there needs to be better and 
more coordinated primary care for 
women, the issue of the creation of a 
specialty in women's health remains 
difficult. In fact, the discipHne of fam- 
ily practice already trains its residents 
in this area and more. 

While prestigious institutions like 
Harvard and Stanford promote "pri- 
mary care," family practice has been a 
largely ignored specialty, with nonexis- 
tent or hypoplastic academic depart- 
ments. In fact, family practice may 
provide one of the better answers to 
the problem of providing cost-effective 
and nonfragmented care to women 
(and others). I encourage HMS (and 
other) students who wish further expo- 
sure to family practice to seek elective 
rotations in the field. 

Dana Ke?7t ''gi 

I appreciated the issue of the Alumni 
Bulletin devoted to women in medicine 
and women's health (Spring '95). 
However, I would like to correct a 
glaring error in the article by Ellen 
Schur and JoDean Nicolette. They 
state that "Currently, no single spe- 
cialty trains practitioners in such var- 
ied aspects of women's health as 
colposcopy, assessment of depression, 
and management of cardiovascular 
health." In fact, family physicians are 
trained to do all of these things, and 

I agree that there is a need for more 
research and clinical services in 

Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

women's health. Further, it seems rea- 
sonable that there should be more 
than one model from among which 
women can choose to receive health 
care. A women's health specialty may 
well contribute to those needs. 

What is frustrating is that Schur 
and Nicolette seem unaware that thou- 
sands of family physicians already pro- 
vide the kind of care they advocate. In 
fact, many students have chosen family 
practice for this very reason. 

Yet, I am not surprised that these 
students are unaware of family physi- 
cians. Stanford, like Harvard Medical 
School, seems to have virtually no use 
for family physicians in the education 
of its students. This, in my opinion, is 
an error even more glaring than the 
one made by these students in their 
otherwise interesting and informative 

Michael B. Potter 'go 

I commend Ellen Shur and JoDean 
Nicolette for taking the time to write 
about their vision of a new women's 
health specialty. I take issue, however, 
with their statement "Currently, no 
single specialty trains practitioners in 
such varied aspects of women's health 
as colposcopy, assessment of depres- 
sion, and management of cardiovascu- 
lar health." Family medicine offers 
training in all of these areas, as well as 
vaginal deliveries and care of the 
infants, children and male family 
members who are so much a part of 
many women's lives. 

Unfortunately, there are still a few 
"orphan" medical schools, including 
Harvard, without departments of fam- 
ily medicine. Students at these schools 
have difficulty understanding family 
medicine and exploring it as a career 
option. I urge interested students to 
contact the state chapter of the 
American Academy of Family 
Physicians and ask to be connected 

with practicing family physicians who 
can serve as teachers and mentors. The 
phone number for the AAFP is 800- 
274-2237. The Massachusetts 
Academy of Family Physicians [of 
which the author is president] can be 
reached at 508-526-9753. 

In September 1995, 1 will be open- 
ing a Cambridge Hospital affiliated 
health center in Somerville with David 
Hirsch. We will offer management of 
cardiovascular health in women and 
men, colposcopy, assessment of 
depression, prenatal and obstetric care, 
and well child care. Interested students 
are welcome. 

Rachel Wheeler '77 

The Old Boys Club 

I read your Spring '95 issue of the 
Bulletin on "Making Herstory" with 
interest. I was in the Class of HSDM 
'77 — almost 30 years after the first 
women were admitted to HMS. On 
numerous occasions we were shown 
slides of naked women in our genetics 
class. I imagined that most women felt 
a certain amount of discomfort, but 
did not know how to respond. In our 
reproductive medicine course, one of 
our professors began his lecture with 
the following introduction: "Rose is 
my name, testis is my game." It 
induced a lot of laughter from the 
audience, but it would certainly be 
highly inappropriate at this time. 

During our gross anatomy course, 
one of my male classmates offered to 
do the head and neck dissection for me 
in exchange for my services of sewing 
the buttons on his shirts. It was a very 
disdainful suggestion to me. 
Unfortunately for him, he turned out 
to be the only person in the class who 
absolutely could not stand the smell of 
formalin and had to cover his mouth 
and nose with a handkerchief through- 
out the anatomy class, making several 
trips outside to take gasps of the cold 
winter air in order to continue with his 

Many of us could relate to Yeou- 
Cheng Ma's restroom scene. On many 
occasions during my oral surgery rota- 
tion, I waited for the oral surgeon and 
my male colleagues to emerge from 
the men's locker room at Mass. 
General Hospital. I was never able to 
locate the elusive group and I certainly 
missed out on a lot of discussions ger- 
mane to the case that we had just 

During my last year at the Harvard 
Dental School, I decided to pursue a 
career in oral surgery. While scrub- 
bing in a case with one of the oral sur- 
geons, he remarked that one had to 




have brute strength to be an oral sur- 
geon, obviously referring to my petite 
size as a distinct disadvantage. I coun- 
tered that one only needed to use one's 
instruments in a skillful manner to 
overcome that disadvantage. 

On one of my oral surgery inter- 
views in the South, I waited for the 
director of the program for over an 
hour. When he finally appeared, he 
was surprised that I was still around. 
He told me that while my records at 
Harvard were superior to some of the 
male applicants from my class, I would 
be a far more qualified candidate if I 
were to get a medical degree and reap- 
ply to his program. He further told me 
that there was only one qualified prac- 
ticing woman oral surgeon in the 
whole United States at that time. I was 
headed for the West Coast for a series 
of interviews, but that interview con- 
vinced me that I was not to join the 
ranks of the oral surgeons. I canceled 
all my remaining interviews and flew 
back and obtained my medical degree 
and guess what? I did not reapply for 
an oral surgery position. I am an infec- 
tious disease faculty member at the 
University of Massachusetts Medical 
School and have no regrets! 

In the real world of academia one 
still has to deal with the mentality of 
the Old Boy's Club. The saddest thing 
is that some of the senior women col- 
leagues who have made it into the club 
tend to perpetuate that tradition. It is 
unusual for a senior woman colleague 
to reach out to junior women with 
helpful and practical advice so they do 
not have to repeat the same mistakes. 
It is as though they wanted the junior 
members to experience the same hard- 
ship they experienced to arrive at 
where they are. It is hard enough to 
have to play hard ball all the time with 
the Old Boys, it is demoralizing to 
have to deal with this kind of 
unhealthy attitude. 

Lest I am giving the impression 
that all men are evil, I have some male 
senior physicians from my fellowship 
days who are indeed concerned about 
me and my professional development. 
For that I salute them! True mentors 
in the real spirit of Mentor in Homer's 
Odyssey are truly hard to come by. 

Growing up as a little girl in a fam- 
ily of ten girls and two boys in 
Malaysia, my father lamented the fact 
that he only had two boys. The girls, 
in his opinion, were useless in the 
sense that they would never be able to 
carry on the family name. I then 
decided that I would prove him wrong 
and make something of myself. I was 
the first child in the family to complete 
a higher education, which was a nov- 
elty for a woman 20 years ago in my 
country, and I am the only child in the 
family who is a physician. 

Now, although socially I am known 
by my married name, professionally I 
am known by my maiden name. I have 
no desire to be another boy that my 
father wished to have; I am perfectly 
content to be the woman that I am. 

Kwan Kew Lai, HSDM '77 

Living in IVIemory 

What a reservoir for recollections was 
your "Living Memory" issue (Summer 
'95), especially for those of us "reac- 
tionary" individuals who lived before 
the middle of the century. Two articles 
had special appeal; the one by James 
Neller and the wonderful, name-filled 
memory of Herrman Blumgart by 
Franklin Epstein. 

I was on a district and working in 
the shadow of the airport (much qui- 
eter then) two years before Neller. I 
could not describe my experiences as 
well but we stayed in more hospitable 
quarters and did all of our work by 
starting with the tunnel. Perhaps my 
most memorable experience was deliv- 
ering a fine child from a mother who 
could neither hear nor speak and who 
was quite alone with her husband, sim- 
ilarly afflicted. 

Once born, the infant screamed 
loudly and evoked great joy from the 
parents, as well as this tired medical 
student who had sat with them for a 
day and a night! We made daily visits 
to our patients (Charlie Campbell, son 
of C. MacFie, and I) for the first few 
days, whipping over through the tim- 
nel but coming back on the ferry when 
the fathers plied us with hospitahty. 

While I never worked at the BI, I 
was aware of those Blumgart years and 
of the rapidly growing popularity of 
the medical school rotation there as 
they set out to prove their worth. A 
small vignette: when I went fi-om the 
Boston Children's to its counterpart in 
Buffalo, one of my attendings was a 
Dr. Bender. He had been Oscar 
Schloss's chief resident when he 
moved to Boston and was with him 
there and on his inglorious return. 
Bender vividly described the anti- 
Semitism that drove him back to New 
York. How fortunate that Blumgart 
was able to survive in that atmosphere. 

Hemy H. Work '57 

Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

The Summer 1995 issue of the Bulletin 
was really a source of great pleasure 
for the Class of 1939. I've enjoyed 
reading all of it and particularly the 
article about Dick Wolfe and his activ- 
ities in the Countway Library, 
"Countway's Biographical Sleuths." 
I've consulted Wolfe a number of 
times with great pleasure and hope to 
see him more often. 

The article written by Jim Neller 
("The Deliverer") was extremely inter- 
esting to me, as were excerpts from 
Francis Moore's book. I had seen a 
prepublication copy of the book and 
reviewed it for one of the surgical 

Altogether, it was a very full issue 
with a lot of valuable parts including 
the part about Fritz Irving, though I 
think perhaps we ought to sometime, 
with expletives deleted, print the 
"Ballad of Chamber Street." 

Soma Weiss was one of my teach- 
ers, as was Herrman Blumgart, both 
outstanding people, and the little arti- 
cle about Dr. Cushing's fussing 
Jerome Head for getting married 
brought up good memories, since I 
trained at the Brigham in 1939; very 
few of us in our class were married or 
even married until the war was over. 

Eben Alexander Jr. '^p 

I really enjoyed the Summer '95 issue 
of the Bulletin. It contained many 
reminders of the spirit that is at the 
heart of medicine 
James H. Gordon '66 

Thank you for the "Living Memory" 
issue of the Bulletin (Summer '95) in 
which you published some accumu- 
lated material regarding the past at the 
medical school. 

"There were giants in the earth in 
those days." 

It was great to reflect on them once 

Lloyd R. Evans '40 

After reading James Locke Neller 's 
description of his experiences as a 
medical student while at HMS, many of 
us will be tempted to recount our 
experiences in the "district." 

My first call was to a tenement in 
South Boston where I found a woman 
in labor. After several hours of observ- 
ing her mild labor, I returned to the 
hospital. Again I was called by her hus- 
band and again I pumped up the low 
tire on the Model T and drove to the 
tenement. There was nothing immi- 
nent and again I left only to be called 
back in two or three hours. This time, 
success. A 12 -pound baby emerged 
reluctantly to the relief of the husband 
and doubly so to the attending medical 

My next delivery went faster but 
the placenta refused to appear. 
Pressure only caused more bleeding. 
The resident was called and after 
much effort the placenta was pro- 
duced. It was scarred and diagnosed as 
a "placenta accreta." 

My next delivery was fairly easy but 
the baby didn't look right and I was 
told it was an anencephallic monster. 
Treatment was quick and easy. I was 
told to drop it into a pail of water! 
What? No consent forms, conferences 
or legal maneuvers? 

My fourth delivery was observation 
only because pre-delivery bleeding 
made hospital care necessary and sub- 
sequent Cesarean section. 

The remaining deliveries must have 
been routine as I cannot recall them. 
Maybe at last I found out what a nor- 
mal delivery was like! 

John R. Parish '5 / 

Recollections of Blumgart 

I offer this footnote to Herrman 
Blumgart's long career to fill in a small 
gap in the story for readers of Franklin 
Epstein's fascinating account (Summer 
'95). Those who weren't in the 
Harvard medical area in the 1960s 
might infer that Blumgart's career as a 
practicing physician ended with his 
retirement in 1962. That is not the 
case. Blumgart continued to practice 
medicine in the University Health 
Service for several years. I know, 
because I was one of his patients in 
December 1967. The episode was 
memorable, for Blumgart was a model 
of the caring physician, and one I still 
recall for students I now teach. 

I was at the time an HMS ill on the 
first clinical rotation of our principal 
clinical year, medicine, at the old 
Boston City Hospital. A short time 
after the rotation began, many of us 
became ill with influenza. After two 
days and sleepless nights at BCH on call 
and another 24 hours in my room with 
high fever, muscle aches, and prostra- 
tion, I staggered down to the little 
health service office in Vanderbilt Hall 
feeling the inner conflict of whether to 
care for myself or fulfill my PCY oblig- 
ation, which we took very seriously. 

I was astonished to be greeted by 
Blumgart, whom I recognized immedi- 
ately. Dressed immaculately in a dark 
suit, he sat and listened carefully as I 
related my story. I felt the uncertain 
guilt of a student facing his professor 
unprepared. Not all of our professors 
were perceived as sympathetic to stu- 
dent infirmities. You can imagine my 
relief when he looked up and said with 
compassion in his voice, "Why don't 
you come in to the hospital and let me 
take care of you." He said it with such 
a kind and gentle, yet persuasive way, I 
couldn't refuse. 

I was in Stillman Infirmary for five 
days under Blumgart's care. I used this 

Autumn 1995 


opportunity to appreciate from the 
patient's perspective what it is hke to 
be sick in a hospital, and to observe 
how this distinguished physician took 
care of his patients. I discovered that a 
patient really does surrender self- 
respect and pride and needs reassur- 
ance when entering a hospital, even 
one as cozy as Stillman was. 

Blumgart tried very hard to impart 
a sense of riding things out together, 
of shouldering your burden of illness, 
of taking care of you in every way until 
you had recovered fully. This was the 
lesson that I learned from him while 
under his gentle, attentive care, and 
one that I have tried to emulate. 

I don't know when Blumgart finally 
retired from practice, but I can attest 
to the fact that he continued to care 
for patients, and to be a role model for 
physicians of the future, after his for- 
mal retirement in 1962. 

Richard E. Bumey '69 

Franklin Epstein's inspiring eulogy 
"Serendipity and Herrman Blumgart" 
(Summer '95) prompts me to add my 
own serendipitous moment with that 
revered giant. 

It was early 1949 in the basement 
corridor of Yamins Research Institute 
at the BI. I had come from Pittsburgh 
for an interview with Monroe 
Schlesinger. In those days, a year of 
pathology was desired as a basis for the 
study of internal medicine. Suddenly 
heading my way was Blumgart. "What 
are you doing here Chamovitz?" 
(He gave it a Brahmin flavor, 
"Chaahmovitz.") With chutzpah — not 
then characteristic of me — I replied: 
"Well, you turned me down for an 
internship (I was a fourth alternate 
behind such greats as Herb Ravin, Phil 
Troen and Howie Hiatt, who selfishly 
held on to their acceptances) and you 
turned me down for an assistant resi- 
dency in medicine, so I thought I 

would try for a year with Dr. 

His next words were thundered 
from Mt. Sinai. "How would you like a 
fellowship in radioiodine?" I replied, 
"I'd love it! What is it?" Thus I 
became the fourth research associate 
in "I131" after Bob Buka, George 
Kurland, Milt Hamolsky and Al 
Ureles, an honor that included work- 
ing under the inimitable A. Stone 

Serendipitous? Well, during my 
practice of cardiology, nuclear medi- 
cine was just my "minor," but after 
moving to Israel 1 1 years ago, nuclear 
medicine became my "major," my 
vehicle for adapting to a new life, and 
my opportunity to contribute to Israeli 

Why did Blumgart and I choose to 
walk in that same corridor and not 
another? I'd like to think that his life- 
time of serendipity rubbed oft' onto me 
that day. 

David L. Chamovitz '48 

The MD/PhD Paradox 

With great pleasure I read the article 
entitled "The Physician Scientist: Dual 
or Dueling Degrees?" by David 
Shaywitz (Summer '95). Shaywitz pre- 
sented a well-balanced account of the 
difficulties encountered during a dual- 
degree training program and subse- 
quent career. 

As a recent graduate of Harvard's 
MD/pho program, I believe that his 
final statements were the most conse- 
quential: there is no "right" or 
"wrong" way to combine research and 
patient care — it's a very personal 
choice. With this said, most MDs and 
MD/phDs would concur that patient 
care takes (sometimes critical) time 
and energy away from research. The 
two are combined for reasons other 
than productivity and efficiency, 
namely, enjoyment, salary, academic 
position and job stability. 

This is the advice I give to medical 
students contemplating the combina- 
tion of research and patient care. If 
you are most excited by pure basic 
research, minimize your clinical train- 
ing and don't plan on having any 
patient care responsibilities. 
Combining the two under these cir- 
cumstances makes it extremely difficult 
to compete for basic science research 
funds, and isn't fair to your patients, 
yourself or your family. If, however, 
you love patient care more than 
bench work, there's probably little ben- 
efit in taking three to five years to earn 
a PhD. The two to four research years 
during subspecialty fellowship training 
can be used to learn the skills neces- 
sary to perform academic research in 
your field. 

So, what is the value of MD/pho 
training? The value is in the mutual- 
ism that exists between clinical medi- 
cine and basic science. The agenda of a 
basic science researcher (be he/she PhD 
or MD) is to answer fundamental bio- 

Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

logical questions, regardless of their 
relevance to human disease (hence the 
inherent disdain of some basic science 
researchers for physician-scientists). 
The agenda of a physician is to treat 
and cure human disease. It is only the 
physician-scientist who has the knowl- 
edge to ask the clinically relevant bio- 
logical question, and to set the 
foundation for the basic science 
research that will ultimately answer it. 

The many years of clinical training 
one will need to be able to frame clini- 
cally relevant biological questions 
depends mainly on one's chosen spe- 
cialty. What creates a good researcher 
is not the number of degrees after 
one's name. It is a complex combina- 
tion of research advisor, lab environ- 
ment, talent, hard work and luck. 

In summary, I encourage students 
to set realistic goals, seek advice from 
as many superiors (and contempo- 
raries) as possible, choose clinical and 
research training wisely and, in the 
end, satisfy only themselves. 

As Shaywitz notes, the concept of 
MD/pho training is a relatively new one 
and its implementation is still in evi- 
dence. I find it ironic that medical 
school faculties tout the virtues of 
integrating basic science and clinical 
medicine, yet there is currently no 
integration in the MD/phD program 
itself. Although there is an inherent 
overlap between preclinical course- 
work and PhD didactic coursework, 
there is no "MD/phD curriculum." 
Surely there are enough MD/pho fac- 
ulty members at most major medical 
schools to create such a unified cur- 
riculum so that each student is guaran- 
teed minimal competency in those 
areas judged to be essential. 

Moreover, three to five years are 
spent in PhD training without discus- 
sion of medical or patient care issues. 
Well-chosen seminars could provide 
such continuity. Integration of the 

curricula, if possible, could theoreti- 
cally decrease the time required to 
earn both degrees (e.g., the inherent 
six months of overlap between preclin- 
ical and didactic coursework, and the 
elective time in the fourth year of 
medical school, which most students 
use for travel or research) without 
diluting either degree. In fact, I'll 
argue that such integration would 
make the training more valuable. I am 
hoping that Harvard will lead the way, 
as it often does, with such integrative 

Finally MD/phD students have an 
unusually high dependence on good 
counseling at all stages of their train- 
ing. MD/phD programs must make spe- 
cial attempts at providing multiple role 
models, counselors and mentors to 
every student entering the program. I 
was fortunate enough to have two 
tremendous mentors and role models 
(my PhD advisor and medical school 
advisor), both of whom are MD/phDs 
combining research and patient care in 
their own personal way. 

John V. Frangioni '5)^ 

I was pleased to see the article on the 
physician-scientist in the Summer 
1995 issue of the Bulletin. This is an 
extremely important matter, which has 
been largely neglected. The two open- 
ing quotations chosen by Shaywitz are 
telling: the first, in favor of the physi- 
cian-scientist, says what fun it is to be 
one. The second comments that it's 
impossible to do both well. In those 
two quotes is probably the answer to 
the whole issue. Undoubtedly, it's fun 
to do both, and undoubtedly those 
who do both don't do both well. 

Unfortunately, Weinberg's com- 
ment looks only at one side of the mat- 
ter, specifically, that good clinicians 
don't usually do good research. What 
is rarely stated is that good laboratory 
researchers don't usually provide good 

clinical care. That this aspect of the 
physician-scientist debate is frequently 
neglected is not just chance. It reflects 
a common misunderstanding of the 
nature of clinical care. This is reflected 
in the comment by Shaywitz, consid- 
ered so important by the editor that it 
was highlighted: "At a certain level, 
both the questions we all ask as well as 
the approaches we all take are essen- 
tially the same." That comment is sim- 
ply wrong. 

The essential question that needs to 
be answered in dealing with a patient 
is: "Why does this unique person not 
feel healthy and what can I do to help 
restore him/her to health or to 
enhance his/her perception of health?" 
That is not the question one asks when 
trying to "understand yeast." 

Throughout history, the great heal- 
ers — whether shamans, priests or oph- 
thalmic surgeons — have recognized 
that people are complex tangles of 
feeling and flesh, ideas and intestines, 
and that healing the person requires 
consideration of the individual as a 
whole. A large part of what is done by 
great physicians comes from the right 
side of the brain, is intuitive, nonver- 
bal, analog in nature, and not 
amenable to the methodology of sci- 

To be a great physician is to have 
the necessary scientific knowledge, and 
then to be able to recognize that all 
that knowledge is woefully incomplete; 
the decisions that need to be made 
must be based on what the physician 
believes is best for the individual, 
unstandardized person, who is not just 
a collection of biochemical reactions. 
Of course, one has to know the biol- 
ogy and the chemistry. But the real 
challenge is for the physician to 
develop a radar that detects the soul of 
the patient, to characterize that soul, 
and to respond on the same wave- 
length. The very concept is so unsci- 

AUTUMN 199; 



entific and so contrary to the method- 
ology of laboratory research that it is 
virtually impossible to oscillate 
between the laboratory and the clinic 
without doing a disservice to one or 
the other. 

I hope that Shaywitz will read his 
comment quoted in this letter again 
and ask himself whether in fact the 
questions that are asked by scientists 
and by physicians are the same. If he 
truly believes they are, then I have 
deep concerns for his patients. I have 
less concern for his laboratory, because 
his laboratory did not come to him 
seeking his care. 

George L. Spaeth 

Professor of Ophthalmology 

Jefferson Medical College 

Director, Glaucoma Service 

Wills Eye Hospital 

I applaud David Shaywitz's excellent 
report on the difficulties inherent in 
being a physician-scientist ("Dual or 
Dueling Degrees," Summer '95). Like 
others, I have embarked on a different 
but also common route to this career. 
Since graduating from HMS without a 
PhD, I first immersed myself in clinical 
activities as a resident in internal medi- 
cine at Penn, an emergency room 
attending at a busy New York City 
hospital, and as a hematology-oncol- 
ogy fellow at Cornell. Only after this 
intense chnical training, and with 
barely a modicum of basic science 
skills, did I join a Pho-heavy top flight 
laboratory at Rockefeller University. 
Over the past two and one-half years I 
have hopped back and forth from the 
bedside to the bench and feel I can 
make some comments on this career 

The main difficulty in doing both is 
not that one cannot keep up clinically, 
but rather that every minute spent 
away from the lab makes it harder to 
compete in that arena. Clinical medi- 

cine doesn't move nearly as quickly as 
the laboratory. With a few months of 
study and experience, most physician- 
scientists I know can easily regain their 
clinical reflexes. As a matter of fact, 
and as alluded to by Shaywitz, basic 
science training really furthers one's 
clinical acumen, making one a more 
careful and rigorous medical practi- 

Too many clinicians know little 
about molecular and cellular biology, 
forcing them to dispense pharmaceuti- 
cals or order tests that they know little 
about. On the other hand, basic sci- 
ence will bypass a dilettante at warp 
speed. I think one can do both only by 
spending a much greater percentage of 
time in the laboratory. 

There is something to be said about 
the axiom that clinicians understand 
things better on a global scale and the 
PhDs do better science. Perhaps physi- 
cian-scientists should be earmarked for 
a more "translational" career, bringing 
laboratory advances to the bedside or 
clinical ideas to the bench. 

Despite all this, clinical medicine is 
fun and exciting, while basic science is 
challenging and unrestrained. It is no 
wonder that so many of us want to do 

Robert H. GlassfJian '(^7 

50th Anniversary Program for Scholars 

The 50th Anniversary Program for 
Scholars in Medicine will be launched 
in 1995 in conjunction with the 50th 
anniversary of the entrance of women 
to Harvard Medical School, 
announced Eleanor Shore '55, dean 
for faculty affairs and chair of the 
anniversary committee. The program, 
which will offer competitive stipends 
and other forms of support to junior 
faculty at "the most vulnerable point in 
their career," is being initiated to 
strengthen HMS efforts at increasing 
the diversity of the faculty. 

Junior faculty have been targeted 
for this program because it is at this 
point that they have just finished long, 
rigorous training and must compete 
for grants, pubfish and, if clinical, 
practice at the same time they may be 
starting or adding to family responsi- 
bilities. Shore and her committee 
identified two key factors in a junior 
faculty member's decision whether to 
remain on the academic ladder: time 
and support. 

The goal of the new program is to 
provide 10 stipends a year. The 
awards, suggests Shore, could be used 
for mini-sabbaticals when the scholar 
might "buy out" of clinical responsibil- 
ities long enough to write a grant, fin- 
ish a research project or prepare a 
manuscript. The stipend might also be 
used to hire laboratory assistance for a 
junior faculty member who does not 
yet have independent funding. 

It is hoped that this support will be 
a "particularly important element of 
HMS's efforts to enhance the represen- 
tation of women on the faculty," says 
Shore. "Although representation of 
women has increased significantly at 
the level of student and instructor, a 
considerable drop-off begins at the 
assistant professor level and continues 
dramatically to the level of full profes- 

Dean Daniel Tosteson '48 has 

Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

asked Shore to head a committee to 
estabhsh criteria and procedures for 
reviewing appHcations. But all this 
hinges on the program's first goal: to 
raise the $3 milhon deemed necessary 
to give the program a healthy start. 

Funds for Alzheimer's Research 

When former president Ronald 
Reagan announced late last year that 
he suffered from Alzheimer's disease 
the country was shocked, but respected 
his courage. To acknowledge the con- 
tributions Reagan and his wife, Nancy, 
made to increasing awareness about 
the disease, the former first couple 
were awarded the David Mahoney 
Prize by the Mahoney Neurosciences 

The Reagans are the first recipients 
of the prize, which was established to 
recognize individuals who have helped 
increase public awareness about neuro- 
science and neurodegenerative dis- 
eases. Nancy Reagan accepted the 
award during a dinner celebration in 
New York in June. 

Finding a cure for Alzheimer's dis- 
ease will also be the goal of a $7.8 mil- 
lion gift to HMS from the estate of a 
Los Angeles couple, Edward and Anne 
Lefler. The donation, which was made 

in May, will be used to establish the 
Edward R. and Anne G. Lefler Center 
for the Study of Neurodegenerative 
Disorders. Based at the medical 
school, it wiU fund a professorship, fel- 
lowships for graduate and postdoctoral 
students, and grants for innovative 
research and experimental research. 

Edward Lefler suffered from 
Alzheimer's disease for 10 years before 
his death in 1994; Anne Lefler died in 
1 99 1. The couple, who did not have 
children, stipulated in their will that 
they wanted a large portion of their 
estate dedicated to research into this 
disease, which afflicts roughly 6 mil- 
lion Americans. 

"I chose Harvard because it is a 
superb institution and I knew Anne 
and Ed would be proud of the way 
Harvard Medical School would honor 
their memory and carry on their 
legacy," said Daniel Bernstein, trustee 
of the estate. 

Former First Lady Nancy 
Reagan receives the 
David Mahoney Prize from 
David J. Mahoney and 
Dean Daniel Tosteson. 

Autumn 1995 


Doctors Learn to Teach 

Harvard Medical School and the 
Harvard Graduate School of 
Education have developed a joint pro- 
gram to teach the doctors of today 
how to educate the doctors of tomor- 
row. Thirty-one physicians from 
around the world participated in the 
Program for Physician-Educators, 
which is co-directed by Elizabeth 
Armstrong, director of medical educa- 
tion at the medical school, and Robert 
Kegan, senior lecturer on education at 
the education school. 

It is funded by a $1.5 million grant 
from the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation, 
which also funds a one-week leader- 
ship course for medical school senior 
faculty and administrators, and two 
year-long fellowships in medical edu- 
cation for visiting faculty. 

"The grant supports joint ventures 
across schools within the Harvard 
community that draw on experts in 
disparate fields," Armstrong said. The 
Program for Physician-Educators 
addresses the related issues of learning 
and teaching, curriculum, evaluation 
and leadership. 

From left to right, Felix Chew, Margaret Waterman, 
Elizabeth Armstrong, Sam Kennedy and Vii^nia Eddy are 
teaching doctors how to teach. 

USA 55 


Collector's Item 

It's not every day a new stamp comes 
to town; even more unusual is if the 
picture on the stamp is of a woman 
professor from Harvard Medical 
School. The rarity of the occasion 
helps explain all the excitement as phi- 
latelists and public health practitioners 
filled the lobby of Harvard School of 
Public Health on July 11, 1995 for the 
the First Day of Issue ceremony to 
unveil the Alice Hamilton U.S. 
postage stamp. 

In 1 9 19 Hamilton became the first 
woman Harvard faculty member when 
she was appointed an assistant profes- 
sor of industrial hygiene at the medical 
school, which at that point incorpo- 
rated a few departments that later 
became the Harvard School of Public 
Health. Her studies on lead poisoning 
in industrial workers pioneered the 
study of occupational medicine. In his 
remarks at the ceremony, Harvey 
Fineberg '71, dean of HSPH, remarked 
on Hamilton's fearlessness and deter- 

mination in her field, and called her a 
"pioneering spirit for women." 
Hamilton died in 1970 at the age of 


"Alice Hamilton was no ordinary 
woman," said Deborah Prothrow-Stith 
'79, assistant dean for governmental 
and community programs at HSPH and 
a speaker at the event. "In fact, she was 
no ordinary human being." 

The 55-cent definitive stamp of 
Hamilton is part of the U.S. Post 
Office's Great American Series. 
(Definitive stamps are printed in large 
quantities and are available for a long 
time as opposed to commemorative 
stamps, of which a limited number are 
printed and are available for only a 
short period of time.) Initiated in 
1980, this series already has 54 pieces, 
including stamps commemorating 
other notable women in history like 
physician Virginia Apgar and sufifi-agist 
Alice Paul. 

Connecticut artist Chris Calle 
designed the Hamilton stamp, of 
which 200 million will be printed. 
Calle and his father, Paul Calle, also 
designed the Moon Landing Stamp, 
which the U.S. Postal Service says is 
one of the most popular stamps ever 

Since 1847, when the first postage 
stamp appeared on the American 
scene, "stamps have attempted to show 
the American experience," said Nancy 
George, vice president of northeast 
area operations of the U.S. Postal 
Service. "Stamps are a tiny canvas that 
portray the history of America." 

Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

President's Report 

by John D. Stoeckle 

Amid graduation and class reunion 
days tiiis spring, the Alumni Council 
discussed teaching and learning, 
money, women in medicine, and orga- 
nizational changes at HMS. 

On teaching and learning, Suzanne 
Fletcher '66, Gordon Harper '69 and 
Ron Arky addressed the New 
Pathway's distinctive courses, Patient- 
Doctor I, n and III. In these, both 
teachers and students now learn. For 
teachers, learning to teach is a major 
effort in course preparation with the 
many faculty tutors (103 in Patient/ 
Doctor I, 600 in Patient/Doctor n, 57 
in Patient/Doctor m); for students, not 
only is learning the patient's perspec- 
tive and clinical skills part of the con- 
tent of courses, but issues of 
professional relationships (with 
patients, staff, teachers and institu- 
tions) are examined in students' 
accounts of their careers in becoming a 

On money, more of course is 
needed, especially in making the 
school affordable to students, since 
more resources are being restricted. A. 
Gushing Robinson, dean for resource 
development and public affairs, and 
Gliff Barger '43A, chairman of the 
Alumni Fund, addressed these needs 
with hopes for larger donations. 

On women in medicine, Eleanor 
Shore '55 reported November plans to 
continue the year-long celebration of 
50 years of women at HMS, a theme of 
a recent HMS Alumni Bulletin. 

On HMS organization, Dean Daniel 
Tosteson '48 noted the development 
of "institutes," bringing together sci- 
entists of diverse interests (and depart- 
ments) for collaborative work; the 
appointment of new deans for clinical 
affairs (Richard Kitz) and for faculty 
development and diversity (William 
Silen); the expanded size of HMS grad- 
uate education, now with some 450 
PhD candidates in addition to some 

660 MDs; and the development of the 
former English High School alongside 
Vanderbilt Hall into a research center, 
housing both hospital and medical 
school laboratories. 

These formal reports aside, there 
were informal reflections on where the 
educational future lies, with more care 
moving outside the hospital and more 
efforts to contain the costs of care — if 
not of education. 

Ghester d'Autremont '44 was nom- 
inated to represent the Alumni 
Gouncil at the larger Harvard 
University Alumni Association, and at 
the business meeting on Alumni Day, I 
turned the gavel over to the new presi- 
dent, Stephanie Pincus '68 and her 
council (see the masthead of this issue 
for the names). 

The council is a great experience 
for those of us who have been privi- 
leged to serve — to learn the changes 
facing HMS as the world of practice and 
clinical science moves so fast. 

Joh77 D. Stoeckle '47 is HMS professor of 
medicine emeritus and physician, 
Massachusetts General Hospital. 

John Schott, M.D. 

HMS '66 

Investment Advisor 

Managed accounts, 

retirement accounts, 

family trusts 

Dr. Schott provides highly 

personalized investment 

management to individuals, 

families and institutions 

His unique approach and 

established record merit your 



Schott Investment 


Publisher of The Schott Letter 

120 Centre Street 

Dover, MA 02030 

(508) 785-9996 


Registered Investment Advisor 

SEC and Commonwealth of 


Autumn 1995 


• > 




1/ ^ ^^Hff 

k »^^|i A 

^^^^^^^^^^m ^^^^^ 





ftl W]?lwksu ^B 


Sm^^ ^*^^^^^^| 






Graduates throw inflated 
rubber gloves into the air » 
as their degrees are con- 
ferred during morning 
exercises In the Yard. 

Class Day 1995 was marked by shift- 
ing moods and changing weather. While 
graduates disembarked from the shuttle 
bus that brought them from the morn- 
ing ceremonies in the Yard, sunlight 
streamed through the woven brims of 
straw hats, casting flecks of light onto 
the colorful spring dresses worn by 
many of those waiting to greet them. 
But soon after lunch, as everyone took 
their seats and the chords of "Pomp and 
Circumstance" sounded above them, the 
thinning sun faded to gray drizzle. 
Those standing along the edge of the 
tent huddled closer together to block out 
the chill. They shivered and moved 
toward the graduates, who radiated with 
energy and warmth. 

Felix Nufiez opened the program 
with a salute to "the beautiful woman" at 
his side. Chastity Jennings-Nunez, who 
was not only his co-moderator, but had 
also become, a week before, his wife. 
Jennings-Nuiiez was honored, she said, 
to be addressing the class while the 
school was celebrating 50 years of 
women at HMS and an incoming class in 
which over 50 percent of the students 
are women. 

The Nuiiezes introduced their class- 
mate Jordan Fieldman, who after seven 
years at HMS, is finally receiving his 
degree. "It's great to be graduating," said 
Fieldman, and it's also great, he said, to 
be alive. Fieldman told the story of why 
it took him so long to wear the crimson 
hood. In 1989, his first year at medical 
school, he was diagnosed with a brain 
tumor. After being told the chances of 
recurrence were high, and consequently 
his chances of longterm survival nonex- 
istent, he became intensely aware of the 
relationship between scientific fact and 
nature's unpredictability: "Forays into 
alternative medicine, despite my skepti- 
cal nature and rigorous scientific train- 
ing, are not difficult to understand. 
When Western medicine gives you o 
percent odds of surviving five years, it 
suddenly becomes a matter of 'I want to 
live' versus 'I want to understand and 
f have proof." 

J Living in the face of dying is 
-f painfully dramatic but not, in Fieldman's 

Autumn 1995 


mind, devoid of humor. While his talk 
was accentuated with quips and puns, 
at one point, Fieldman made a slip in 
speech that inadvertently characterized 
as much about his intrepid refiisal to 
submit to his grim diagnosis as has his 
survival two years after statistical prog- 
nostication. While he meant to say he 
wanted to write a four-word letter to 
journal editors who predicted a o per- 
cent chance of survival for his type of 
brain cancer, instead he said "four-let- 
ter word." The effect was not missed 
on his audience. 

Rodney Taylor roused the audience 
from their quiet reflection with the 
robust bravado of his former football 
player self. He invoked the philosophy 
of his Harvard football coach, Mac 

Hans Kim 

Singleton, who "instilled in me and his 
other players that whatever it was that 
we decided to pursue, we should have 
fun." And while "the idea that I could 
have fun while toiling away and sacri- 
ficing as a pre-med seemed implausi- 
ble," Taylor said he has incorporated 
these wise words into his outlook on 

But Coach Mac was not the only 
person to inspire Taylor, as he also 
found guidance in the abbreviated 
meditations of his renal pathology pro- 
fessor, Helmut Rennke, who told him 
"What you see is what you get" and 
that no matter how much we may want 
them to, people rarely change. Taylor 
took this message to heart: "I realize 
that there are shortcomings in my life 
that I am not pleased with — personal 

Joshua Hauser 

snags that I hope are transient rather 
than permanent... .1 have embraced 
the challenge of Professor Rennke's 
words and have continued to use them 
as a launching pad toward my personal 
growth and development." 

Guest speaker Bernadine Healy '69, 
director of Health and Science Policy 
at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, 
explored the pride and prejudice of 
women at Harvard Medical School: a 
century of prejudice against them as 
they tried unsuccessfully to be admit- 
ted, and now a half-century of pride in 
their accomplishments. "Prejudice 
means 'prejudge'," said Healy. "That is 
something that physicians and scien- 
tists in particular must never fall prey 

Healy also offered a ghmpse into 
the graduates' future work environ- 
ment and foretold a not-too-distant 
future when the fantastic forces of 
genetic forecasting and virtual reality 
will combine to produce "...a color 
movie in which the embryo develops 
into a fetus, is born and then grows 
into an adult, explicitly depicting body 
size and shape and hair, skin, and eye 
color. Eventually... the mother will be 
able to hear the embryo — as an 
adult — speak or sing." But while this 
literal glimpse into the future may 
have its exciting possibilities, it may 
also portend anxiety and even disap- 
pointment: "What happens if in virtual 
reality she sings badly or talks back? 
Or if the parents don't want a brown- 
eyed brunette, or a crook in the nose, 
or freckles? What will the prospective 
parents do...?" A loud thunderclap 
punctuated Healy's statement here — a 
certain celestial comment on the folly 

of those who attempt to fool with 

The Nunezes then presented well 
loved and respected faculty and staff 
with awards: Abul Abbas, professor of 
pathology, received the award for the 
preclinical years; Lewis First '80, assis- 
tant professor of pediatrics, received 
the award for the clinical years; and 
Edward Hundert '84, associate dean 
for student affairs, who has received 
this award so many years in a row he's 
acquired the status of incumbent, was 
presented the award for the faculty 
member who has done the most for 
the class. Kate Cox, who after many 
years as the assistant in the Student 
Affairs Office has left to pursue a new 
life in the Southwest, was presented 
with an appreciation award for her 
"unending patience with the HMS stu- 
dent body." 

And with that, Felix Nunez turned 
the program over to Dean Daniel 
Tosteson '48, "to confer our $100,000 
degrees upon us." As if by a silent 
whistle, a throng of spectators ignored 
the fine-print line in the program ask- 
ing everyone to remain in their seats 
and, armed with cameras and video- 
cams, squeezed into what space they 
could on both sides of the stage. 
Accompanied by uproarious cheers, 
hoots and hollers. Dean Daniel 
Federman '53 read the names of the 
graduates as each was hooded and 
hugged by his or her society master; 
the graduates were handed leather- 
bound degrees and the several children 
who held their hands were given small 
white teddybears sporting Harvard t- 

In his valediction Dean Tosteson 
told students to always be attuned to 
the needs of the person before them, 
not just the illness of the patient. 
"Leave out no relative domain of heal- 
ing," he said, cautioning that "we heal 
one another, but we also make one 
another sick." He encouraged the 
graduates to develop an understanding 
of the social determinants of disease 
and closed by encouraging them to 
embrace "the remarkable vision of a 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

human being as a biological organ- 

With the reading of the oath and 
one final cheer, graduation for the 
Class of 1995 came to a close. Among 
the degree recipients were many who 
graduated with honors and those who 
won special awards. They are: 

Tamara Callahan, cum laude "The 
Economic Impact of Multiple 
Gestation Pregnancies and the 
Contribution of Assisted Reproduction 
Techniques to Their Incidence." 

Edward Chan, cum laude "Introduction 
and Expression of the E. coli Beta- 
Galactosidase Gene in Miniature 
Swine Keratinocytes." 

Susan Domchek, magna cum laude 

"Specificity in Phosphopeptide/SHz 
Domain Interactions as Defined By 
Direct Binding." 

Marian Eakin, cum laude Community 
Service Award: "Women's Preferences 
for Breast Cancer Surgery: the 
Importance of Quality of Life 
Considerations . " 

Caroline Ho, magna cum laude Harold 
Lamport Biomedical Research Prize 
for the best paper reporting original 
research in the biomedical sciences: 
"Linkage of a Familial Platelet 
Disorder with a Propensity to Develop 
Myeloid Malignancies to Human 
Chromosome 21 q22.i-22.i." 

Erich Horn, cum laude "A Study of 
Gender Based Cytochrome P450 ia2 
Variabihty: A Possible Mechanism for 
the Male Excess of Bladder Cancer." 

Vikas Kundra, cum laude "Ekstendin: a 
Protein Found in Extending 

Chen Lee, magna cum laude James 
Tolbert Shipley Prize for excellence 
and accomplishment in research: 
"Genetic Analysis of the Extra cellular 
Regions of the Parathyroid Hormone 

Richard Lee, cum laude "Studies of Skin 
Graft Rejection Using MHC Class II- 
Deficient and MHC-Deficient Mice." 

Richard Lin, cum laude "The Role of the 
Fetal Fibroblast and Transforming 
Growth Factor-beta in a Novel Model 
of Human Fetal Wound Heahng." 

Eugene Lit, cum laude "Changes in 
Vicinal Proton-Proton NMR CoupUngs 
in Determining Conformational 
Changes of Butandedioic Acid as a 
Function of pH." 

John McHugh, cum laude "Photoaffinity 
Derivatized Local Anesthetics Which 
Label the Voltage-Dependent Sodium 

John Patterson, cum laude "Parathyroid 
Hormone (PTHi-84) Increases Bone 
Morphologic and Biomechanical 
Properties in Estrogen^Deficient 

Chandrajit Raut, cum laude "Regional 
Localization on the X Chromosome of 
Components of the Turner 

Marc Sabatine, magna cum laude 

"Genetic Alterations to Alter 
Transplant Rejection." 

Yoriko Saito, cum laude "Molecular Basis 
of Murine and Human 

George Sakoulas, cum laude "Expression 
and Role of Basic Fibroblast Growth 
Factor in Acute Experimental 
Duodenal Ulceration." 

Theresa Shanahan, magna cum laude 

Leon Reznick Memorial Prize for 
excellence and accomplishment in 
research: "Circadian Physiology and 
the Plasma Melatonin Rhythm in 

Alan Villavicencio, cum laude 

"Stereotactic Radiosurgery of Skull 
Base Meningiomas." 

Nina Livingston 

Sherry Cohen, Sirgay Sanger Award for 

excellence and accomplishment in 
research, clinical investigation or schol- 
arship in psychiatry: "Substance Abuse 
and Mental Illness." 

Richard Gomberg, Rose Seegal Prize for the 

best paper on the relation of the medical 
profession to the community: "Design of 
Mental Health and Substance Abuse 
Treatment Benefits Within the Context 
of Single Payer Health Care Reform 

Joshua Hauser and Monique Rainford, Robert 
H. Ebert prize for excellence and outstand- 
ing accomplishments in the field of pri- 
mary care medicine. 

Joel Hirschhorn and Sarah Wood, The New 
England Pediatric Society Prize. 

Chasity Jennings-Nunez, Vernon Rosario and 
Kristin Sinnock, Multiculturalism and 
Diversity Award. 

Shawn S. Nasseri, Henry Asbury Christian 
Award for notable scholarship in studies or 
research: "Chemoprevention in Head 
and Neck Cancer." 

Elizabeth Twardon, The Community Service 

Autumn 1995 

Pride and Prejudice 

by Bernadhie Healy 

place and a state of mind that proudly 
bind us all together. Pride is a driving 
sentiment of today: your parents and 
spouses are proud; your children here 
and to be here are proud; your teach- 
ers are proud; you are proud. And 
medicine too is a proud profession: our 
patients look to us in their most diffi- 
cult moments. 

Although most of my comments 
today will be about pride, there is also 
a historical reason to talk to you today 
about both pride and prejudice. This 
year is the 50th anniversary of the 
admission of women to Harvard 
Medical School. It started what I like 
to call the women's era at HMS. 

First there was prejudice. I was 
born under the sign of the Harvard 
Overseers. It was the summer of 1944, 
the very summer I was born, that the 
Harvard Overseers were waging a bat- 
tle as they deliberated the momentous 
decision to overcome an age-old preju- 
dice against women in medicine. The 
culmination of their battle appeared in 
a report I fetched from the September 
26, 1944 edition of the New York 
Times: "Harvard opened the doors of 
its Medical School to women today for 
the first time since the school was 
founded 162 years ago. Closing a long 
fight, the Board of Overseers of 
Harvard College approved a recom- 
mendation. ..that women be eligible for 


The article went on to explain that 
the overseers justified their action 
based on patriotism. 

Growing up in Queens, my home- 
town newspaper was the New York 
Times. Little did my parents know that 
that report on page 20 would have 
impact on their newborn daughter. 
That action made it possible to have 
little Bernie's application to Harvard 
Medical School accepted some 20 
years later without pretending, like 
YentI did to study the Talmud, that 
Bernie was a boy. 

I'm convinced, however, that my 
parents never read that momentous 
column. It was on the woman's page, 

<«1HI *- %■ \-MWm : 



Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

almost obscured by the surrounding 
articles on town and country wear, 
cosmetics made easier, news of unusual 
foods, and a picture of the 1944 ver- 
sion of the "wonder bra" (some things 
haven't changed). It is not just that 
fashion, beauty and gourmet food 
overwhelmed the successful fight to 
get women admitted to HMS; it's just 
that these events were surely dwarfed 
by the real news of the day, World 
War II. 

The rest of the paper was domi- 
nated by war stories. On the firont 
page alone were reports of the 
Americans and British pouring mon- 
ster shells over the Siegfried lines at 
the Nazis; the Red Army had nearly 
completed the liberation of Estonia; a 
navy plane called the "Black Cat" sank 
three Japanese war ships in the South 
Pacific; and Charles de Gaulle 
announced that the war was likely to 
go on until the spring. Also on the 
front page was a story about the mud- 
slinging battles between President 
Roosevelt and Governor Dewey — yes, 
1944 was also a presidential election 

Actually, the war and its many bat- 
tles are not so far removed from why I, 
and almost half of you, are assembled 
here today. GI Joe may have won the 
war in Europe and the Pacific; 
Roosevelt may have won his battle for 
reelection; but the silent hero of the 
day was Rosie the Riveter, who started 
a revolution. Rosie, as some of you 
may remember, was the poster child of 
patriotic women who moved into tra- 
ditionally male jobs, such as "man- 
ning" heavy equipment, building 
airplanes and cars, and driving 
trucks — all as part of the war effort. 

Rosie's fervor penetrated a more 
difficult home-front battle: women 
physicians' struggles to get military 
commissions. Since the War 
Department interpreted "persons" that 
they could commission into the army 
to mean men only, it took both a des- 
perate need and an act of Congress to 
enable the commissioning of women 
into the U.S. Army and Navy Medical 

Bernadine Healy and Dean Daniel Tosteson 

Corps. That occurred in 1943, a full 
two years before Harvard Medical 
School opened its doors to women. 

In this context I note with enor- 
mous pride that HMS's next first-year 
class, the Class of 1999, will be the 
second class in HMS history to have 
more than 50 percent of its members 
women (the Class of 1998 was the first 
class to be over 50 percent women), 
and one of them will be Second 
Lieutenant Rebecca Marier from West 
Point. Lieutenant Marier is the first 
woman to graduate at the top of the 
class in West Point's 193 -year history, 
which means she was first in all three 
program areas: military, academic and 

So, in truth, it was Rosie's revolu- 
tion that really brought the Harvard 
Overseers to end the fight to keep 
women out of Harvard medicine. The 
board's decision was based on a short- 
age of qualified male applicants due to 
the war rather, I might add, than faith 
in the abilities of women to prevail 
academically or in performance. Hey, 
we'll still take it. 

Actually, women had to have sta- 
mina; the battle for admission to 
Harvard spanned a full century. The 
idea first surfaced in 1847, when it was 
resoundingly rejected. Then in 1872 
Harvard had a second chance but dis- 
missed a proposal to have a female 
medical college; yet another proposal 
was turned down during World War I. 

Going back to my hometown news- 

paper, in 1 949 — the year that Harvard 
Medical School's first class with 
women was graduating — the New York 
Times wrote an editorial about women 
attending Harvard's professional 
schools — now law as well as medicine. 
It ended with this sentiment: "The 
time when women's brains were con- 
sidered on the average inferior to 
men's is long past. What is lefr of that 
belief is only superstition." Supersti- 
tion is another word for prejudice. 

And so we stand here taking great 
pride in Harvard's 50-year celebration 
of women at her medical school; but 
we should not forget the superstitions 
and the prejudices that even now 
sometimes lurk when women go where 
some prejudge they should not go. 
Prejudice means "prejudge"; some- 
thing that physicians and scientists in 
particular must never fall prey to. 

Now let's move on to pride. We — 
men and women — at Harvard have a 
lot to be proud of since the time when 
the overseers made their momentous 
decision. Medicine of the past 50 years 
has been about medical research trans- 
forming our medical world, about 
practice translating that research into 
all kinds of human benefit. 

World War n transformed us in 
immeasurable ways. Not just our view 
of women, or about women in medi- 
cine, but our entire profession. Just 
like the face of its student body, the 
very face of today's medicine was fash- 
ioned by the World War II era and the 

Autumn 1995 


Theresa Shanahan and her baby, Emily 

events of the immediate post-war 

During World War II, President 
Franklin Roosevelt declared that after 
the war our nation should direct the 
power of science and technology, so 
critical to winning the war, towards 
civilian goals. Science was dubbed "the 
endless frontier." Roosevelt — perhaps 
because he knew the suffering of 
chronic debilitating disease — singled 
out medicine above all the sciences as 
the national pursuit to bring maximal 
benefit to the lives of all Americans. 
To achieve the common good, the 
next war was to be the war on human 
disease; the ramparts America watched 

became medical, not just military. 

During this incredible time, the 
National Institutes of Health was 
developed, intentionally separate from 
the other areas of science. Medical 
research was not funded as part of the 
National Science Foundation, as some 
advised at the time, but apart because 
of its crucial mission to protect and 
improve the health of the public. One 
measure of the importance of that 50- 
year-old poHtical decision is that the 
NSF is now a $3 billion agency, while 
the NIH exceeds $11 billion annually. 
And you don't have to be in medicine 
to see just how that investment has 
paid off. 

Just look at those post-war years of 
the 1950s and compare them to today. 
You all hear about the wonderful 
fifties. My teenage daughter has fifties 
parties. This was a glorious time in our 
history, not just a time when Harvard 
was finally graduating women, but a 
time when the economy was expand- 
ing, our country was prosperous, we 
had peace at home, and the Marshall 
Plan was rebuilding Europe. 

But our physical and mental health 
were not so glorious. We were in the 
midst of an epidemic of heart attacks 
and sudden death among middle-aged 
men that we didn't understand. Cancer 
was an unspeakable, incurable disease. 
Those with severe mental illness were 
seen as hopelessly insane. Growing up 
in Queens in the 1950s, I used to look 
down on a mysterious edifice on a lit- 
tle island one could see from a distance 
while crossing the Queensborough 
Bridge — it was called the Hospital for 
the Incurably 111. I imagined it to be a 
scary place, an Alcatraz for the sick 
and discarded. 

The sick were too often discarded 
back then. Not because we did not 
value them but rather because we did 
not have the means to help them. 
There was no heart surgery to make 
blue babies pink, to prevent heart 
attacks or replace deformed heart 
valves. We did not have cardiac pace- 
makers, artificial hips or knees, kidney 
dialysis or organ transplantation. 

We had no effective treatments for 
high blood pressure; no chemotherapy 
or radiation treatment for cancer. 
Penicillin was a miracle breakthrough 
of the war years, but essentially the 
only antibiotic. Rheumatic fever was 
still rampant among our children. 
Frontal lobotomy was being celebrated 
worldwide as the breakthrough treat- 
ment for severe depression and had 
just won the Portuguese neurologist 
Antonio Egas Moniz the Nobel Prize 
in Physiology or Medicine. 

And then there was polio. President 
Roosevelt was in a wheelchair because 
of it. I vividly remember summer fears 
of polio. More than once, the health 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

officials closed the public swimming 
pool in our neighborhood because of 
the risk of polio. I recall the fear in all 
the moms each time their child had a 
summer fever or sore throat. Louie, 
who lived next door to us, got polio; 
he survived but was left paralyzed. 
How far we have come these many 
years from the glorious fifties. 

We in medicine have a lot to be 
proud of when you think back to those 
times, not so very long ago. Medical 
research and innovation from places 
like Harvard have revolutionized our 
lives. We can now cure many cancers; 
treat virtually all. Polio is no longer a 
summer dirge of our inner cities. We 
have seen dramatic decreases in mor- 
tality from heart disease and stroke. 
Neuropharmaceuticals targeted at 
selective brain chemicals for treatment 
of depression and anxiety have super- 
seded lobotomy. And these past suc- 
cesses have only increased our 
expectations for doing better and 
doing faster for many challenges we 
still face. 

But those successes did not occur 
by accident. By choice, medicine and 
medical research in this country have 
become a priority. We spend a trillion 
dollars as a nation on our health. We 
invest over $i i billion in biomedical 
research through the National 
Institutes of Health and another $13 
to $14 billion through private sector 
research to sustain the advances in 
medicine and to cure the illnesses of 
today and tomorrow. This unwavering 
investment in medical care and inno- 
vation is part of that sustained strategic 
commitment to health made almost 50 
years ago. 

And that is why the United States 
leads the world in advanced health 
care, but also why that care is so 
expensive. As one wag aptly noted: "In 
the rest of the world, death is 
inevitable; in the U.S. it's an option." 
We have been striving to produce the 
best at whatever cost. Modern medi- 
cine has changed our expectations of 
life, as much as quality of life and 
length of life. 

For tomorrow's practice, will there 
be pride or prejudice? As we look to 
the next 50 years — the years in which 
we will all see our children work and 
raise families, and in which you gradu- 
ates will reach your prime and even 
start to think about retirement — we 
will see even more profound transfor- 
mations of our world by virtue of dis- 
coveries in biology and medicine. 

The powers of molecular and struc- 
tural biology and biotechnology con- 
tinue as a new and seemingly endless 
frontier. No human disease should be 
safe from extinction or radical control. 
Genetically engineered cancer vaccines 
hold the promise of destroying even 
the most advanced and spreading 
tumors. Reconstituting the human 
immune system will allow AIDS victims 
to live with their disease. 

Learning how to destroy human 
viruses lurking within living human 
cells will bring us cures for HIV, 
hepatitis, many tumors and even, at 
long last, the common cold. 
Understanding, delaying, preventing 
or curing Alzheimer's disease would 
have helped the 4 million Americans 
afflicted today, but given its predicted 
growth, is desperately needed to save 
the 16 million Americans projected to 
have this disease in the year 2040. 

We are mapping the human 
genome, the command and control 
center that carries the code for much 
of who we are. Molecular medicine 
will rewrite the textbooks of tomor- 
row. We have already discovered 
genes for cystic fibrosis and colon and 
breast cancer; we have linked genes to 
prostate cancer, osteoporosis, and 
some forms of heart disease. In time 
we will understand the genetic deter- 
minants of addictive behavior, com- 
mon forms of atherosclerosis, 
manic-depressive illness, and maybe 
even intelligence and artistic talent. 
With each discovery comes more 
understanding about how to detect, 
delay and cure disease, but also an 
increased understanding about the 
nature of life, human and otherwise. 

In the process, the universe, to 

paraphrase Freeman Dyson, will surely 
be perturbed, and much of human 
biology and many of the health deci- 
sions you will make will be markedly 
different from the ones you have 
learned here. (So much for all those 
tuition payments.) Some of the 
changes seem obvious and are the 
price of success: 

• The patients you will care for will 
be older — so will you, come to think of 
it. You will be pushing up against that 
probable human life span of about 100 
years. This is okay if you are fit and 
productive, but depressing if it means 
more nursing homes, bankrupt Social 
Security and Medicare, and a wave of 
tenured professors with Alzheimer's. 

• You will treat more chronic disease; 
as a corollary to living longer, chronic 
disease will increase. Women already 
face more chronic diseases than men, 
in part because they live seven or eight 
years longer. Osteoporosis, arthritis, 
stroke, heart failure, dementias and 
recurrent cancers will demand your 

Richard Lee and his baby, Amanda 

Autumn 1995 

attention as never before. The focus in 
research and practice will be as much 
on quality' ot life as on quantity of life. 

• You will practice more preventive 
medicine, but it will be a newer 
form — high-technology prevention. In 
fact, let me be the contrarian to the 
voices who say that prevention is the 
cheapest form of medicine. That's 
true, if we are talking about yesterday's 
prevention: good hygiene and sanita- 
tion, exercise, eating a low-fat diet, not 

Rini Banerjee 

smoking, and watching your weight 
and blood pressure. But that is only a 
small part of the prevention you will 
be practicing in the future. 

Think about some recent trends in 
that direction: a lifetime of choles- 
terol-lowering agents for some 
patients with intractably high serum 
cholesterol levels; hormone replace- 
ment for women and maybe for men 
not for 2 years but for 20 or 30 years; 
prophylactic colectomy for those 
under 40 with familial polyposis. As we 

more precisely define risk in genetic 
terms, we will feel the obligation to do 
something long before any disease 

As one breast cancer survivor said, 
after the much awaited and celebrated 
recent discovery of the breast cancer 
gene: "So what, if all it does is tell a 
woman she will get breast cancer when 
there is nothing she can do about it!" 

The point is, we will be compelled 
in most cases to find out what to do 
about it. And that means treating dis- 
eases before they occur. If an individ- 
ual gene is viewed as a ticking time 
bomb, that may translate into mastec- 
tomy or ovary removal or years of 
drug treatment before any disease 
appears. Will the prostate cancer gene 
lead to prophylactic removal of the 
prostate or its medical equivalent in 
early middle-aged men? 

Extending such high-tech diagnosis 
and prophylactic treatment to diseases 
before symptoms appear will have its 
pluses, but also some minuses. The 
economic cost of health care will 
surely rise, and in all likeHhood so will 
the prevalence of both anxiety and 
depression — in turn prompting further 
excursions into other preventive inter- 
ventions, perhaps prophylactic Prozac. 

As we pause with pride about all the 
many advances that we will encoimter 
in the medicine of tomorrow, we also 
must pause in awe of the power of 
tomorrow's medical and life sciences 
to transform the world in which we 
live and the ways in which we think. 
For medical science to continue to 
flourish and realize all the dreams of 
tomorrow, we must acknowledge that 
ethics and the public interest will more 
and more become companions, wher- 
ever science goes. 

Those of you who read Jurassic 
Park — written by one of my classmates 
here at Harvard Medical School — 
were entertained by the fiction of 
genetics and biotechnology gone mad. 
But there is a sobering thought in 
something one of the main characters 
says: "We are witnessing the end of 
the scientific era." 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

It is our responsibility, and it will 
be yours especially, to assure that that 
fictional apocalypse does not occur. 
Your generation of Harvard doctors 
will come face to face with a whole 
new realm of dilemmas driven by sci- 
ence that earlier generations fretted 
about only in science fiction or in 
ivory towers. Let me mention just a 

• Beginning- and end-of-life deci- 
sions will get harder and harder. 
Living wills are becoming common 
practice; such wills defined medical 
care choices in the final weeks of life of 
both Richard Nixon and Jacqueline 
Kennedy Onassis last year. Stepping 
far over the line of professional ethics, 
however, we see Jack Kevorkian. He 
and his supporters chillingly seek to 
redefine the role of physician as the 
destroyer of depressed and suffering 
souls who ask to die. 

• Genetic therapy on somatic cell 
lines is here; how will we define the 
limits of gene therapy on gametes — 
the germ pool that carries pertubations 
faithfully into future generations 
whether they like it or not? 

• Growing human embryos in the 
laboratory solely for research purposes 
was body debated last year. Under a 
moratorium, most recently from 
President Clinton, this work was again 
banned from NIH support. (Personally, 
this is one ban I support.) 
Nonetheless, two distinguished acade- 
mic panels at NIH tried hard to gain 
government support for such experi- 
mentation, and it is only a matter of 
time before the issue surfaces again. 

• Young college women are being 
actively solicited for egg donation 
through ads in college newspapers, 
with some ads requesting specific reli- 
gious background and physical type in 
the egg bearer. Especially troubling, 
some women are lured by thousands of 
dollars, yet the full long-term impact 
of the donation procedure on the 
donor's health is by no means clear. 

Class moderators Felix Nunez and Chastity Jennings-Nunez 

• We hear a lot about privacy rights, 
but what about genetic privacy? What 
if we can define a gene for alcoholism, 
schizophrenia or some other behav- 
ioral feature, whether or not it is ever 
phenotypically expressed? What are 
the implications for life insurance, 
health insurance or job applications? 
This defines a new kind of potential 

• And finally, imagine virtual reality 
designer children: Although the far- 
thest off, it is not science fiction to 
imagine the impact of full knowledge 
of an individual's genetic makeup. In a 
March 1995 article in the journal 
Science, which "blue-skied" about 
future scientific developments, Harvey 
Lodish, a distinguished molecular 
biologist from MIT, made a rather 
evocative prediction: "By using tech- 
niques involving in vitro fertilization it 
is already possible to remove one cell 
from the developing embryo and char- 
acterize any desired region of DNA. 
Genetic screening of embryos, before 
implantation, may soon become rou- 
tine. It will be possible by sequencing 
important regions of the mother's DNA 
to infer properties of the egg from 
which the person develops. 

"This information will be trans- 
ferred to a supercomputer together 
with information about the environ- 
ment, including likely nutrition, envi- 
ronmental toxins, sunlight and so 
forth. The output will be a color 
movie in which the embryo develops 
into a fetus, is born and then grows 
into an adult, explicitly depicting body 
size and shape and hair, skin, and eye 
color. Eventually the DNA sequence 
base will be expanded to cover genes 
important for traits such as speech and 
musical ability; the mother will be able 
to hear the embryo — as an adult — 
speak or sing." 

A breathtaking notion. That 
embryo-adult in virtual reality on your 
supercomputer is your future genera- 
tion looking back at you through a 
crystal ball. But, what happens if in 
virtual reality she sings badly or talks 
back? Or if the parents don't want a 
brown-eyed brunette, or a crook in the 
nose, or freckles? What will the 
prospective parents do, inevitably 
armed with high-technology preven- 
tion and gene therapy? Crystal balls 
are supposed to show you the future; 
they don't usually give you the chance 
to change it. 

Our astounding successes in science 

Autumn 1995 


Mark Johnson is surrounded by his family. 

and medicine will bring us joy and 
benefit, but also problems. Today we 
are confronting the economic chal- 
lenge of the extraordinary success of 
the wonders of biology and medicine. 
But tomorrow we will confront new 
kinds of ethical, social and moral chal- 
lenges that will make the economic 
problems that seize the headlines now 
seem simple, and the battles over 
whether or not to admit women into 
medical school seem downright petty. 
What this medical world of tomor- 
row will demand is a generation of 
informed leadership in research and 
practice who have the courage and the 

wisdom to get this right. It will take 
persistence and disciplined thought 
and broad debate throughout society, 
way beyond the ivory tower. It will 
take knowing what you stand for in 
ethical and moral terms. It will require 
your making it, your own way and by 
new paths, as researchers, clinicians 
and as fully engaged members of a 
changing society. It will take the wis- 
dom and perspective of women as well 
as of men working together on matters 
that no one man or one woman could 
even begin to face alone. 

Doesn't that make you all glad that 
the overseers came around some 50 

summers ago to admitting women to 
Harvard Medical School? With pride 
and prejudice then; with pride and 
relief today. 

Beiyiadine Healy '6p is a physician and 
director of Health and Science Policy at the 
Cleveland Clinic Foundation. She is for- 
mer director of the National Institutes of 
Health and, in the fall of igg^, will 
become dean of the School of Medicine at 
Ohio State University. This speech is based 
in part on thoughts included in her book, 
A New Prescription for Women's 
Health: Getting the Best Health Care 
in a Man's World (Viking, igg^). 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

Reflections From 
the Edge 

by Jordan B. Fieldman 

It's an honor and privilege to 
address the women and men of the 
Class of 1995. It feels great to be grad- 
uating. Although my only degree is an 
MD, I can proudly affirm, "Medical 
school, the best seven years of my life." 
I have had many nontraditional experi- 
ences during my time at HMS, from liv- 
ing in Asia with Tibetan lamas to 
spending a research year down in 
Bethesda at Bernadine Healy's '70 for- 
mer home. My first side trip, however, 
was not by choice. 

During the fall of my first year at 
HMS, I was having difficulty reading 

the blackboard and was subsequently 
diagnosed with malignant brain can- 
cer. I was given a 5 percent chance of 
surviving one year, providing that I 
survived a risky 15 -hour neurosurgical 
procedure. The surgery left me with- 
out sight, which I was told would likely 
not return. Unexpectedly, I had to 
revisit the surgical suite for complica- 
tions from a screw that inadvertently 
had been left in my head. (I had often 
been told that I had a screw loose, but 
this was a little different.) 

After nine months of experimental 
inpatient chemotherapy followed by 

Peabody Society Master Ron Arky gives Sarah Dicl< a congratulatory hug. 

daily craniospinal irradiation, I was 
told that my diagnosis carried a five- 
year survival rate of o percent. I 
checked my Harrison's Principles of 
Internal Medicine to confirm this and 
read that five-year survival was nonex- 
istent because recurrences were 
"invariable." I decided that if I man- 
aged to survive five years I would write 
a simple, four-word letter to the edi- 
tors. It would say, "Maybe not so 

Perspective was suddenly thrust in 
my face. It became exceedingly diffi- 
cult to hold the tasks of medical school 
to the same degree of importance after 
being informed that I was dying. 
Fortunately, to paraphrase Mark 
Twain, the reports of my dying were 
greatly exaggerated. 

Living as a terminal cancer patient 
while participating fully in the activi- 
ties of a medical student offered me a 
unique glimpse into doctor/patient 
dynamics, based on my having "a foot 
in each camp." I bore witness to much 
doctor-bashing during support groups 
for cancer and pain patients as well as 
in alternative medicine circles. Among 
medical people, I heard frequent alter- 
native medicine-bashing, and also 
some very denigrating attitudes toward 
patients. It was quite difficult at times 
to be part of a system that supported 
my dying and not my living. 

Forays into alternative medicine, 
despite my skeptical nature and rigor- 
ous scientific training, are not difficult 
to understand. When Western medi- 

AuTUMN 1995 


cine gives you o percent odds of sur- 
ging five years, it suddenly becomes a 
matter of "I want to live," versus "I 
want to understand and have proof." 

The word "invariable" felt particu- 
larlv harsh. One of the ways we can 
help bridge the chasm that often seems 
to separate patients from doctors — 
"them" from "us" — is to be mindful of 
the language we use. For example, 
when we do our best to treat a 
patient's condition but do not succeed 
in improving it, we commonly say, 
"The patient failed therapy." Yet, was 
it truly a failure on the patient's part or 
was it our treatment or even we who 

The label of "patient" in and of 
itself has an effect on the psyche. It 
supplants a person's usual labels relat- 
ing to career or family roles. This new 
label can be disempowering, constrain- 
ing or even condemning. Imagine how 
it might affect the patient/doctor rela- 
tionship if we acknowledged our com- 
mon goals and considered our patients 
as "partners in healing." 

The labeling can degenerate fur- 
ther as someone moves from being a 
"person" to a "patient" to "the fibroid 

in room 8." I watched this metamor- 
phosis with interest during my own 
hospitalization. One day I was a per- 
son; the next day I was a brain tumor. 
A month later I was a medical student. 
A week later I was Cisplatin and 
Cytoxan in 5 1 3 . 

Costumes also influence our per- 
ceptions. When I put on a white 
jacket, I am a medical student. When I 
put on a johnny, I am a patient. 
Although it is the same person under- 
neath the different outfits, the words, 
labels and costumes can actually affect 
the way we feel, act and respond. 

Remember how exciting it felt to 
put on a white jacket for the first time? 
We felt special, different, separate in 
some way from the other "role-play- 
ers" in the hospital. Our minds create 
a distinction between physicians, non- 
physicians and patients. Arrogance can 
arise when we over-identify with our 
role and our perceived importance. It 
helps to feel our feet against the 
ground and remember we are human 
beings like everybody else. 

One frequently cited term that 
bears closer examination is the enig- 
matic juxtaposition of the words 

Edward Hundert, associate dean for student affairs, corrals tlie class into place. 

"false" and "hope." While often 
invoked under the pretext of not mis- 
leading a patient, the notion of "false 
hope" is ludicrous at best, and detri- 
mental at worst. People need hope. 
Hope heals. This year's Harvard 
University commencement speaker, 
Vaclav Havel, once wrote, "[Hope] is 
as big a gift as life itself." 

Hope is a feeling — ^you either have 
it or you do not. It cannot be false any- 
more than we can experience false joy, 
false sorrow or false frustration. Most 
of us are probably feeling happy right 
now at our graduation. Can we be sure 
this is not "false happiness?" We need 
to distinguish between so-called "false 
hope" and wishful thinking. (Although 
I am not so sure that wishful thinking 
is devoid of any benefit itself!) 

Compassion is crucial on the wards. 
Our patients, often frightened, are 
stripped of clothes and context and 
identitified only by room number and 
disease. It serves neither them nor us 
to perceive them as puzzling pieces of 
pathology, or worse, as "hits" designed 
to make our day that much more 
wretched before we can finally slink 
off to sleep. 

At least as important as compassion 
for our patients is compassion for our- 
selves. We are about to receive a 
rather pricey piece of paper in recog- 
nition of a commitment to the allevia- 
tion of suffering. There are few nobler 
goals. Yet we are being asked to make 
supreme sacrifices over the next sev- 
eral years, to accept work schedules 
and lifestyle conditions that would be 
unconscionable to impose on prison 
inmates. We will be overworked, 
underpaid, overtired, underfed. Our 
inspiration may be coming less from 
such icons as Sir William Osier than 
from the Energizer bunny that keeps 
going and going and going. 

Our exploitation will contribute to 
tremendous strain on our emotions, 
our bodies and our relationships. 
Without compassion for ourselves 
under such oppressive conditions, we 
cannot be of any benefit to our 
patients or our loved ones. Our hearts 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

harden, our thoughts become bitter, 
resentment thinly veiled as cynicism 
permeates our interactions, and we 
suffer as much as or more than our 
patients. Depression, substance abuse 
and divorce all too commonly color 
the postgraduate training experience. 

Suffering is no stranger to me. 
Been there, done that. In some ways, 
though, as horrendous as the cancer 
experience was, dealing with the sub- 
tle, daily, chronic psychological 
stresses is more vexing. It is not as easy 
to "mobilize against the enemy." As 
the saying goes, "We have met the 
enemy and it is us." 

We have acquired new knowledge, 
new tools, and a new vocabulary that 
entitle us to be called "doctors." Yet 
we remain human beings, subject to a 
full range of feelings. From day one at 
HMS we are told of the countless 
Nobel laureates who once sat in our 
very seats. As overachievers, we tend 
to internalize these expectations. What 
if one of us here does not receive a 
Nobel Prize? 

Our fear can manifest as insecurity, 
which in turn contributes to self-judg- 
ing and approval-seeking behavior. 
We will have opportunities to assuage 
our insecurities by working extra hours 
to make a good impression. Approval 
and praise feel wonderful, yet our 
physical and mental health is more 
valuable. Trust me. 

During the acute phase of my ill- 
ness, I lived entirely in uncertainty. I 
had survived the December surgery 
but had no guarantee that I would live 
to see buds appear on the trees. It 
became eminently clear to me what 
was important in life. I was not on 
earth to impress people, to achieve 
recognition or accolades. With Death 
breathing down my neck, it was quite 
obvious that whether I was buried with 
straight As or straight Cs would not 
matter to the worms. The only experi- 
ence that retained true meaning was 
giving and receiving love. The rest was 
but a dance around that central nour- 
ishing theme. 

We must give ourselves permission 

to enjoy life without needing to get 
cancer to do so. It helps to be able to 
distinguish between the ego's desires 
and those of the heart. Very few peo- 
ple at death's doorstep lament not hav- 
ing worked more hours. There is a 
Chinese proverb that says, "Enjoy 
yourself It is later than you think." 

None of us is the same person we 
were upon entering medical school. 
Let us celebrate our growth and honor 
our original heartfelt reasons for 
undertaking this heroic journey. We 
now move on to the next phase, not 
just of our careers, but of our lives. 
This is our life. Life does not suddenly 
begin when we finish training. 

Unfortunately, I am not the only 
HMS student to receive a cancer diag- 
nosis. Several others in our class have 
had histories of cancer. I felt a particu- 
larly strong bond with one of these 
people, because we both joined the 
first-year class in 1989 having recently 
been treated for brain tumors. I was 
heartened to see him this December, 
and we congratulated each other on 
making it this far and on our upcom- 
ing graduation. Jim Smith died sud- 
denly this January. A tragedy for all 
who knew him, this was a somber, 
sobering reminder of my own vulnera- 
bility, my own mortality. Although we 
are young and mostly healthy, our 
prognoses are all the same. Life is a 
terminal condition. None of us can 
predict with certainty when the final 
breath will come. 

Life is a rich and beautiful gift with 
virtually unlimited potential. And 
sometimes, life sucks. In medicine, as 
in life, there is so much to know, so 
much to learn about living, about lov- 
ing, about being happy, about compas- 
sion. Living among Tibetan refugees 
in Nepal for half a year, I used one 
phrase particularly often while learn- 
ing to speak their language. This 
phrase might also apply to our journey 
through life: "KaU, kaU, ha khogi re." 
Slowly, slowly, I will learn. 

To conclude, "What would you 
think if I sang out of tune? Would you 
stand up and walk out on me?" I stand 

here today, alive, singing out of tune, 
as testimony to the tremendous sup- 
port and love I have received, far 
exceeding what I ever could have 
imagined, from friends here at HMS 
and elsewhere who did not walk out on 
me. I got by with a little help from my 
friends. Thank you. 

Jordan B. Fieldman 'py, who graduated 
with honors, is working with the Mind, 
Brain, Behavior Initiative at Harvard 
and working on a manuscript while apply- 
ing for internships and neurology I'esidency 

Autumn 1995 


Words to 
Live By 

by Rodney Taylor 

After spending four years of 
college and medical school at Harvard, 
I just could not wait to share with you 
some of my thoughts and experiences. 
I've thought about this speech for 
months now. It's a great speech — I 
mean it's really good. It's full of new 
philosophies, deep thoughts and life- 
changing stuff. It's the kind of speech 
that makes you look at the world in a 
whole new way! So last night I tore it 
up. That's right, I ripped it into tiny 

A good friend called me last night 
and I dared to read my speech to him. 
I got about halfway through when I 
realized that it was more likely to 
induce slumber than change anyone's 
life. It simply did not feel right. I real- 
ized that I had gotten caught up in the 
impossible task of fitting eight years of 
growing up into a five-minute speech. 
After all, during this time I discovered 
my love for medicine, entered adult- 
hood, and have begun to experience 
the successes and failures that have 
shaped the person I am today. I 
wanted my speech to reflect all of 
these significant things. My friend 
reminded me that my life changes took 
eight years to happen, surely I could 
not expect to change other people's 
lives in five minutes by reflecting on 
my own. 

So I refocused and attempted more 
humble aims. For just a few moments I 
would like to share a couple (out of 
many) experiences that I had at 
Harvard that have proved important 

and lasting for me. If my experiences 
have any meaning or entertainment for 
you, great. If not, just say they did. 

One of the individuals for whom I 
am very grateful is my former Harvard 
football coach, Mac Singleton. I met 
Coach Mac very early in my Harvard 
career when my confidence was the 
most fi-agile and my vulnerability was 
at maximum. Coach Mac's legacy to 
me was as important in its timing as it 
was in its content. He instilled in me 
and his other players that whatever it 
was that we decided to pursue, we 
should have fun. 

The concept that the rigors of col- 
lege work could be fun was truly novel 
to me. Now sports, dating and party- 
ing — sure that was fun, but the idea 
that I could have fun while toiling 
away and sacrificing as a pre-med 
seemed implausible. I thought that 
especially at a place like Harvard, I 
would relinquish any meaningful 
enjoyment in exchange for a ticket to a 
brighter future. But Coach Mac 
reminded and exhorted us so fre- 
quently to have fun while working 
towards our pursuits, that I eventually 
believed it was possible. 

This attitude generated in me a 
confidence in both my academic and 
nonacademic quests at a time when it 
could have been stripped so easily. I 
feel that this perspective has provided 
the correct balance of humor and 
sobriety in my life. As Coach Mac did 
for me, I am eager to provide for 
someone else the same kind of encour- 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

aging words at a time that may prove 
equally useful to them. 

Another important encounter 
occurred in our second year of medical 
school during the renal pathophysiol- 
ogy block. Professor Helmut Rennke 
was our instructor and I had come to 
admire his zest for teaching. One 
morning during a break when he hap- 
pened to be nearby, I uttered the 
sometimes provocative but always 
friendly phrase: "Tough being a man." 
Curious, Professor Rennke sat down 
beside me, wondering in what manner 
of injustice my heart had been broken. 
Fortunately, my heart was perfectly 
intact, but I asked him if he would 
kindly share with me something unre- 
lated to medicine that he thought 
could be helpful to me long after his 
course was over. 

After deliberating for a moment, he 
said: "What you see is what you get." 
He repeated it. I begged him to 
expound. Professor Rennke spoke 
mainly in the context of relationships 
and marriage. He explained that often 
what we ultimately see can be 
obscured by our passions, fears and 
biases, resulting in an incomplete pic- 
ture. Furthermore, sometimes what we 
see, we refuse to accept; instead, zeal 
persuades us that we can somehow 
change the things in others that we 
don't harmonize with. He concluded 
that people tend not to change. 

Later I would test the validity of 
Professor Rennke's words in my rela- 
tionships and friendships. I agree that 
he is correct in sajdng people tend not 
to change. His words acquired new 
significance, however, when I reflected 
them upon myself I realized that there 
are shortcomings in my life that I am 
not pleased with — personal snags that 
I hope are transient rather than per- 
manent. I began to observe more 
closely that some successful individu- 
als, in the name of personal improve- 
ment and progress, are able to 
victoriously wage war on the resistant 
nature of change. 

These past two years, I have con- 
tinued to use Professor Rennke's 

words as a launching pad for my per- 
sonal growth and development. I have 
learned to search for a more complete 
understanding of my faults, why they 
persist, and how to resolve them. This 
challenge has become as difficult and 
rewarding as any I have undertaken. 
With this challenge, as with others, I 
am sometimes reminded of the inspir- 
ing words from an unknown author 
that a very good friend has frequently 
passed along to me during the peaks 
and valleys of past struggles. 

"Every man and woman has the 
ability to do great things; their touch- 
stone is challenge. No matter what 
their field or endeavor, a man and 
woman must measure themselves 
against the demands of their world. To 
rise to the challenge, inevitably, that is 
why [people] build bridges, climb 
mountains and do one thousand other 
things that manifest personal achieve- 
ment and satisfaction." 

Rodney Taylor 'pj is in an otolaryngology 
residency at the University of Michigan, 
starting with a year of preliminaiy 

Autumn 1995 





/ i 






James Tulhs (left), who 
attended Alumni Day with 
his daughter Virginia 
Tullis Latham '80, tallis 
with Daniel Ellis '39 on 
the steps of Building A. 

the "real world," 546 reunioning 
alumni came home to Harvard. 
Attending symposia, seeking out 
friends, exploring new and old build- 
ings, alumni renewed the ties of mem- 

By Friday, the weather had cleared, 
friendships were reforged, and good 
humor and smiles were abundantly 
evident. Dean Daniel Federman '53, 
director of alumni relations, opened 
the business meeting by promising a 
day of glory. 

Class agents presented the 25th and 
50th reunion gifts to Dean Daniel 
Tosteson '48. Mike Millis and Gary 
Akins of the Class of 1970 cited evi- 
dence that their ties have remained 
strong and that their class has "reveled 
in what nice people we all are": their 
contribution of $99,707. Evan Calkins 
'45 prefaced his class's record-breaking 
gift of $198,509 with a bit of reminis- 
cence. His was a wartime class, most of 
whom were privates first class in the 
army, plus some navy cadets; 
Vanderbilt was a barracks and the 
Quadrangle was the parade grounds 
where the troops marched every 
morning at 6:00 AM. 

Cliff Barger '43A — who has taken 
on the role of chair of the Alumni 
Fund with a passion — expressed how 
much the school is indebted to alumni 
for their devotion, both academically 
and financially. "Despite these trou- 
bled times in medicine," he reported, 
the Annual Fund surpassed last year's 
unrestricted contributions with a total 
of $1.3 million. He introduced the 
new dean for resource development 
and public affairs, A. Cushing 
Robinson, "with whose leadership and 
innovative ideas we will do even bet- 
ter." (Robinson led fundraising efforts 
at University of Pennsylvania and 
Johns Hopkins before being lured to 
HMS, where she started June i, 1995.) 

■ Outgoing president of the Alumni 

■ Council John Stoeckle '47 then turned 
over the gavel to Stephanie Pincus '68, 

; who said that her challenge would be 
to "integrate the women of Harvard so 


you will see many more women up 
here in a few years." 

The symposium, entitled "Not of 
Aesculapius Born," commenced with a 
few words from Federman on the his- 
tory of women in Harvard medicine, 
"not one of our most glorious." He 
quoted Harriot Hunt, a Boston-born 
physician, who in 1847 applied merely 
to attend lectures but was rejected: 
"Faneuil Hall was not our cradle of 
liberty; we had no hand in the rocking. 
If we had had, perhaps the child would 
have turned out better. But only men 
rocked that cradle." 

Dora Benedict Goldstein '49, from 
the "intrepid group" (as Federman 
called it) of first women to infiltrate 
HMS's hallowed halls, led off the speak- 
ers. She pointed out that the question 
she had been asked to address — What 
was it like to be a woman in that 
class? — is unfocused. Turning to 
Federman, she said, "It's like, Dan, 
what is it like to be a man?" She 
pointed out that her memories are 
what every medical student remem- 
bers: the hours and hours of study, 
case presentations of patients to formi- 
dable attendings, experiences in the 
operating room. Laughter punctuated 
her talk, as she good-naturedly pointed 
out that the real pioneers were the 
women who through "a century of 
strife and struggle had battered these 
doors open for us." 

Gerald Foster '51, faculty associate 
dean for admissions ("the man who has 
chosen more HMS students than any- 
one in the history of HMS"), then stood 
to answer the loaded question: Are 
women different? "I'm tempted to say 
no, and then sit down." He kept the 
laughter rolling as he attempted to 
point out some of the differences 
between men and women and turned 
to "the literature" and conversations 
with other admissions interviewers to 
try to explain the success of women 
applicants. One member of the com- 
mittee, he said, ventured that men 
applicants "suffered from the tight 
black shoes and necktie syndrome, 
whereas the women seemed more 

Autumn 1995 

George Bemier '60 

relaxed and certainly more comfort- 
ably dressed." 

Then it was time for the audience 
to queue up at the microphone for 
their turn to talk. Someone asked 
about efforts in recruitment and 
advancement for women, to which 
Federman delineated some of what 
was happening: new dean for diversity, 
an annual conference that all junior 
faculty have with their chairperson 
about their future, and a new fund to 
foster junior-level careers. 

Lisa Hensky '85 agreed that 
advancement is a serious problem and 
wondered if some of the factors Foster 

cited as putting women in a favorable 
position when applying for medical 
school — compassion, interest in team- 
work and collaborative work, and a 
hmited abihty to boast about accom- 
plishments — work against them when 
seeking advancement. Goldstein com- 
mented that she doesn't see women 
faculty at Stanford hurt by their differ- 
ent quahties. 

Federman called on Eleanor Shore 
'55, dean for faculty affairs, to com- 
ment on faculty advancement for 
women at HMS. "We've tried for 10 
years to think of ways to speed up the 
diversification and promotion of 
women and minorities on the faculty," 
Shore said. "Over 10 years, the repre- 
sentation of women professors has 
leaped from 3 to 7 percent." To come 
up with new ideas, she and others 
talked to a lot of young women (post- 
docs, instructors) and found that one 
clear need was extra support at the 
time in their careers when they're try- 
ing to compete for grants, publish and 
perhaps do clinical work — a time when 

"The hopes are that 
in the next lo years 
weHl do more than 
double from 7 to 1^ 
percent women 
professors. " 

Eleanor Shore 

they are also starting a family. The 
goal they have now, said Shore, is to 
raise $3 million for a scholarship fund 
so young faculty may "buy" a three- 
month sabbatical or extra help in lab. 
(See story, page 10.) "The hopes are 
that in the next 10 years we'll do more 
than double from 7 to 14 percent 
women professors." 

Mark Buckman '47 asked Foster if 

Years Later 

Eleanor Shore '55 (right) talks with 
Renee Gelman '50 (left) and Malkah 
Notman (middle) during the reception 
before the Women's Dinner. 

Continuing the celebration of 
50 years of women at HMS, 
part one of tlie Class of 1970's 
symposium was dedicated to 
women's health. S. Jean 
Emans, associate professor of 
pediatrics and co-chief of the 
Department of Adolescents and 
Young Adults at Children's 
Hospital, discussed the "for- 
gotten" health of adolescent 

girls: "The women's health 
agenda is moving forward while 
the morbidity and mortality of 
adolescent girls is increasing." 

William A. Bours IV, who is in 
family practice in Oregon and 
also operates an abortion clinic 
there, discussed the trials, 
both literally and figuratively, 
of providing abortions in an 
increasingly conservative and 
dangerous political environ- 

Joan Goldbei^, instructor in 
medicine and director of the 
AIDS Program at Harvard 
Community Health Plan, was 
among the first physicians in 
Massachusetts to begin treat- 
ing patients with AIDS. HIV- 
positive women present unique 
symptoms, she said, including 
persistent yeast infections and 

less Kaposi's sarcoma. 
"Women are the fastest grow- 
ing group acquiring HIV." 

Part two encompassed basic 
science advances and was 
moderated by Robert S. 
Munford III. Michael 
Gottesman, who is deputy 
director for international 
research at NIH and chief of 
the National Cancer Institute's 
Laboratory of Cell Biology, 
talked about the unlimited 
opportunities but limited 
resources for biomedical 

Andrew Soil, professor of medi- 
cine at UCLA, depicted the rev- 
olution in treatment for peptic 
ulcer. And David Wyler, profes- 
sor of medicine and of molecu- 
lar biology and microbiology at 
Tufts Medical School, took on 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

Suzanne Fletcher '66 

he had looked at the reverse question: 
What's wrong with men? Buckman 
said that as a child psychiatrist he was 
amazed by the statistics Foster cited 
that boys get more hugs in elementary 
school. In elementary school the 
teachers are mainly women and pre- 
dominantly it's the boys who are sent 
to principals' offices and then on to 
counselors and child psychiatrists, at a 
ratio of about 9 boys to i girl. When 
grown, the ratio of men to women in 
prison is way more than 9 to i, he said. 
"What happened along the way?" 

Federman asked: "Gerry, having 
settled whether women are different. 

Tenley Albright '61 

would you like to take on what's 
wrong with men?" Foster declined! 
Arthur Pier '39 stood to say that 
there were no women in either his 
medical school or Harvard College 
class, but that after the first year of 
medical school, he took a summer class 
in neuroanatomy that had one women 
from Johns Hopkins. The course 
entailed a study of a cat that was to be 
put under anesthesia. The woman was 
the only student who picked up the cat 
and caressed it and kissed it before it 
went under. "I feel there is a difference 
between men and women and I hope 
they never lose that sympathetic 


The formal discussion took a hiatus 
as everyone headed to the faculty 
room of Building A, but the convivial- 
ity certainly didn't stop. The 15- 
minute break flew by with 
conversation and refreshments, and 
when the lights flashed to signal time 
to return for the rest of the program, 
no one moved. Federman finally had 
to herd everyone out the door. 

The program resumed with 
Stephanie Pincus '68, who depicted 
the collective experience of the 14 
women of her class. Their memories 
of years at medical school are typified 
by several themes, which she then 
expanded upon: a feeling of isolation, 
rejection through active career dis- 
couragement, delayed recognition of 
an "anti-female" environment, and 
resolution, an appreciation that they 
were successful after all. 

Donnella Green '98, an MD/pho 
candidate in the Department of 
Neurobiology, spoke about the con- 
straints imposed by individuals "who 

Joan Goldbeii; '70 

the topic "What's New, 

Then came the ever-popular 
section of the symposium on 
"personal odysseys." Almost 
all the seats were filled with 
interested listeners. Moderator 
John Davies started the after- 
noon session by asking one 
central question, to which 
there were varied replies: 
"Many of us have done things 
out of the ordinary. Why?" 
Davies himself discussed the 

comparatively unsophisticated 
and alarmingly unsterile state 
of medicine in Moscow, show- 
ing film clips of Pirogov 
Hospital, in which he worked. 

George Fareed, team physician 
for the U.S. Davis Cup players 
(as was his father), discussed 
the type of medical problems 
that come up in tennis players, 
some of which are travel- 
related in addition to sports 
injuries. The audience was full 
of questions for him, particu- 
larly on the subject of drug 
abuse among athletes, which 
Fareed said is not a problem 
for tennis players. One class- 
mate questioned him on the 
"erratic behavior on the 
courts." "Do you offer any psy- 
chological counseling?" 
"Umpires do that," Fareed 
responded. "And sometimes 

the audience." 

Noel Solomons then discussed 
his work in nutrition research 
in developing companies, and 
stuck closely to the theme of 
"the agony and the ecstasy." 
The agony lay mostly in trying 
to convince his medical col- 
leagues in Guatemala City that 
nutrition research has long- 

S. Jean Emans talks with Andrew Soil during a 

term benefits despite the 
immediacy of adequately feed- 
ing the hungry population. The 
very concept of research as a 
problem-solving tool is not suf- 
ficiently appreciated there. 
But, he is making progress, 
and this is the "ecstasy" com- 

breal< in the Class of '70 symposium. 

James H. Jackson '43A, Nancy Rigotti '78 and Robert Goldwyn '56. 

through their actions challenge insti- 
tutional commitments to diversity." 
As a black woman she at times feels 
subtle discrimination, which though 
seemingly benign, adds hurdles that 
"when you consider how difficult the 
road is" can be "devastating." "If every 
one of us here decided that throughout 
our medical careers we would ensure 
that all of our trainees were treated 
equally, that qualified women and 
minorities were promoted fairly, we 
would come a long way in establishing 
a faculty and academic community that 
more closely mirrors our country." 
Then it was the audience's turn 
again. George Bernier '60, dean of the 
University of Pittsburgh School of 
Medicine, pointed out that five years 
ago, only 20 percent of their entering 
class was women and now 50 percent 
of the class is women — a dramatic 
change. "Critical for us was that we 
changed the way we educated stu- 
dents." Four years ago, his school 
changed their curriculum to some- 
thing more like the New Pathway, 

called Physician in the Year 2000 cur- 
riculum (pitt). It is a group process 
where collaborative and cooperative 
activities are important to the success 
of the group. 

Suzanne Fletcher '66 wanted to 
thank all the men who have helped her 
and other women as medical students 
and as faculty, "because they are so 
important in this process. For the next 
several decades women have to con- 
tinue to look to you men as role mod- 
els." She described a memorable 
experience when, as a medical student 
at a school function, a faculty member 
trotted out his six-year-old daughter to 
see her, saying to his daughter, "See 
you can do it too." "I felt so proud," 
said Fletcher. "Here I was a role 
model. This little happening was so 
important in my life." It turns out that 
years later a daughter of that faculty 
member did become a physician, but it 
was another daughter. 

It also turns out that that faculty 
member was Dan Federman. "What it 
illustrates is the power of a woman 

medical student to influence the life of 
a child unborn," he quipped. 

Following up on Fletcher's point, 
Edward Hundert '84, associate dean 
for students, prodded Donnella Green 
to express why positive male role mod- 
els are not enough. "If you don't see 
people like yourself with similar back- 
grounds and similar struggles, I think 
you tend to limit the type of career 
options you take," she pointed out. "I 
don't think many black medical stu- 
dents think they could be dean of 
Harvard Medical School and they 
won't until there is one. Diversity 
opens up potential in all of us and 
increases the quality of the pool you 
have to choose from." 

Sam Clark '35 said that for 42 years 
he dispensed advice as a physician to 
men and women. He recently trans- 
ferred to a retirement home and had to 
choose a new physician from a list. He 
decided to try a woman and wanted to 
reassure his older colleagues that it 
worked out really well. 

Roman DeSanctis '55 reminded the 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

''If you don H see 
people like yourself 
with similar back- 
grounds and similar 
struggles^ I think you 
tend to limit the type 
of career options you 
take. " 

Donnella Green 

gathering that "in large parts of the 
world women are still neither seen or 
heard outside the confines of their 

homes. In many parts of the world 
their plight is even worse than in the 
past. The struggle goes on and I think 
we are all obliged to do something 
about that." An extremely important 
point, concurred Federman, particu- 
larly when trying to prevent the spread 
of AIDS in places where men have con- 
trol over women's sexuality. 

Federman wrapped up the session 
and the goal of the year's celebration 
of 50 years of women at HMS: "Our 
intent this year is not only to look back 
on history but to look ahead. The 
attempt is to make our institution 
more receptive and more stimulating 
for the people who come here so they 
see no ceiling or limitation to what 
their careers can be." 

Dean Tosteson then spoke to the 
group, likening their connection to the 
school as an extended family, and 
updated them on appointments and 
programs at the school the past year. 

Thirty-two people were appointed full 
professors this past academic year, he 
told the audience, and "lest you think 
we have the problem solved, only one 
is a woman: Carol Nadelson, professor 
of psychiatry." There are 2,851 mem- 
bers of the full-time Faculty of 
Medicine, 436 of whom are full pro- 
fessors; 4,753 instructors, 5,301 
trainees (post-docs and residents) — a 
community of 13,000 people. 

Alumni Day speakers (left to rightl Stephanie Pincus, Dora Benedict Goldstein and Gerald Foster. 

Autumn 1995 


In the Footsteps 
of Pioneers 

by Dora Benedict Goldstein 

When the Alumni Association 
asked me what it was like to be in the 
first class of women at Harvard, my 
first reaction was that it was much like 
being at medical school any time and 
probably not very different from the 
experiences of men. My overwhelming 
memories are of studying anatomy far 
into the night, of presenting patients 
to formidable attending physicians, of 
novel experiences in the operating 

A little more digging around in 
memory reminds me that I did differ- 
entiate among groups of men to whom 
we women related at that time. The 
faculty, essentially all men, were gen- 
erally pohte. In lectures they almost 
never failed to note that this was the 
first time they had addressed a class as 
"Ladies and Gentlemen," a comment 
that was new to each of them but not 
to us. Our own male classmates were 
no problem; they quickly became our 
friends. Coeducation was nothing new 
to them; most of them had studied 
with girls in their schools and colleges. 

Where we did encounter hostile 
reactions was from the upperclassmen, 
who had had Harvard all to themselves 
for a few years and resented our intru- 
sion. It must have been an upperclass- 
man who forgot to invite me to the 
banquet for newly-elected members of 
Alpha Omega Alpha. This omission 
was noticed and corrected in time, so I 
did attend the banquet, where I sat 
next to a polite and kind but ludi- 
crously condescending professor, who 
engaged me in conversation about 

cooking. He was proud of his familiar- 
ity with sauces and confused me with 
his discussion of bearnaise and 

We women of the Class of 1 949 
were not the pioneers. We were just 
young people who wanted to be doc- 
tors and were pleased to hear that 
Harvard was now available. We had no 
idea that a century of strife and strug- 
gle had battered these doors open for 
us. Consider what the pioneer women 
went through. 

The last half of the nineteenth cen- 
tury was a time of political and social 
ferment when women very nearly 
became doctors on the same terms as 
men. Women took leadership roles in 
the temperance movement, the move- 
ment for the abolition of slavery, and 
the women's suffrage movement. Why 
not medicine? Women were caregivers 
and they were in demand by women 
patients whose modesty prevented 
them from being properly examined or 
treated by male physicians. 

Beginning with Elizabeth 
Blackwell, who obtained a medical 
degree from Geneva Medical College 
in 1849, scores of women in America 
became doctors, but they did not 
achieve this easily. By the time women 
successfully applied to a medical 
school, they had already walked a long 
road. They had perhaps been allowed 
to follow a sympathetic local doctor on 
his rounds, had taken a medical class 
or two while sitting behind a curtain so 
as not to disturb the easily-distracted 
men, had perhaps traveled to Zurich 

or Paris where admission to medical 
school was easy and the curriculum 
offered a rigorous education, or had 
applied to and been rejected by several 
other medical schools in this country. 
One by one many of these unbeatable 
women were admitted to medical 
schools and became doctors. 

Their ordeal did not end with the 
granting of a degree, however; some 
were reviled, considered dirty because 
they had performed surgery or dis- 
sected a cadaver. Some were spat upon 
in the streets or were the targets of 
tobacco quids and a great deal of 
obscene language. 

But women did become doctors, 
and in astonishing numbers. Once cer- 
tified, they helped other women get 
started and they founded a number of 
medical schools for women. Several 
hundred determined young women 
practiced medicine in this country a 
century ago. Boston was the hub of 
this activity. In 1900, it is said, 18 per- 
cent of the doctors in Boston were 

Backlash followed. Conditions 
changed. At the end of the Victorian 
era, women patients became less prud- 
ish and were less likely to demand a 
woman doctor. Medicine itself became 
more scientific and began to put less 
value on the humanitarian qualities 
that had originally attracted many 
women to the field. Reforms of med- 
ical education began at Harvard under 
President Eliot's leadership in the 
1870s and continued everywhere 
through the 19 10 Flexner report. 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

At that time both men and women 
received shoddy education, often in 
schools of homeopathy or eclectic 
medicine where the whole curriculum 
consisted of a few months of lectures 
with no laboratories or clinical experi- 
ence. Women, more often than men, 
were Hkely to be educated in these 
"irregular" medical schools, most of 
which were forced to close around the 
turn of the century. Enrollment of 
women in regular schools dropped 
steadily and medical education again 
became difficult for women. By the 
1920s women had lost much of what 
they had gained and were forced 
Sisyphus-like to begin again the uphill 

Harvard, almost alone, refused to 
participate in the nineteenth-century 
surge of women into medicine, but not 
for lack of effort by women. In 1 847 
Harriot Hunt requested permission to 
attend classes here but it was not 
thought advisable. Over the next 98 
years many other women knocked on 
the door and were turned away, some- 
times by the faculty, sometimes by the 
students, sometimes by the Board of 
Overseers, the corporation or the pres- 
ident. Never with any reasonable 
explanation. Harvard did not usually 
stoop to the familiar assertions that 
women's brains were too small, their 
bodies too fragile and cyclically vul- 
nerable, their moral nature too deli- 
cate to contemplate certain medical 
topics. Instead Harvard simply deemed 
it inexpedient to admit them. The 
gentleman's rebuff. 

Would bribery work? A woman 
offered Harvard $10,000 if it would 
admit women. No, it would not. Later 
a group of women led by the tireless 
physician Marie Zakrzewska upped the 
ante to $50,000. No again, although 
the school was not above suggesting 
that a sum of $200,000 might cover 
their costs. 

During the nadir years for women's 
medical education. Harvard did 
appoint its first female faculty mem- 
ber, Alice Hamilton. The intrepid 
Hamilton had introduced the whole 
field of industrial medicine. She 

approached corporate presidents and 
politely asked for permission to visit 
their factories and mines. Then she 
published devastating and influential 
reports that exposed the appalling con- 
ditions of lead or phosphorus toxicity. 
She became the first woman on our 
faculty in 19 18, but three conditions 
were set for her appointment as an 
assistant professor: she had to promise 
not to march in the commencement 
parade, apply for football tickets, or 
enter the Harvard Club. (As late as the 
1 940s women literally could only enter 

the club by the back door). Hamilton 
was not a raging feminist but she did 
remark in her autobiography, 
Exploiing the Dangerous Trades, that 
she thought this was a bit tactless. 

Because of the shortage of doctors 
during World War n. Harvard finally 
capitulated. In 1943 yet another com- 
mittee was established to tackle the 
thorny question once again. It was 
chaired by S. Burt Wolbach, the 
Shattuck Professor of Pathological 
Anatomy, and included Oliver Cope, 
Chester Jones, Charles Lund and 

Autumn 1995 


Robert S. Alorison. The committee 
report indicated (wearily) that it could 
find no new arguments on the topic 
but concluded that "the School and 
community will benefit by having a 
number of very superior women 
admitted to replace an equal number 
of mediocre men ineligible for military 
service." They recommended the 
"admission of women to the Harvard 
Medical School as an immediate and 
permanent policy" and their report 
was accepted by the Faculty of 
Medicine but promptly rejected at the 
university level. 

A year later the number of available 
men had dropped so low that the fac- 
ulty repeated its request, which was 
accepted by the higher levels of uni- 
versity administration. Women were at 
last admitted on the same basis as men. 

We were welcomed here (although 
not by everyone, as I mentioned ear- 
lier). Edith Burwell, the dean's wife, 
kindly invited us to tea. I probably 
wore a hat. A professor of surgery gen- 
erously invited a group of medical stu- 
dents and their wives to dinner at his 
house. I was the only woman medical 
student present and I was perfectly 
astounded when it turned out that the 
ladies were expected to retire to the 
living room after dinner while the men 
continued their interesting discussion 
at the table. I stayed with the men, 
which seemed to surprise and possibly 
to enlighten my host. 

It was not for us, the women stu- 
dents, that the opening of HMS to 
women was an important event, it was 
for Harvard and, because of Harvard's 
preeminence, for women and medicine 
in general. Let us not forget the 
women who accomplished this: among 
them Elizabeth Blackwell, Marie 
Zakrzewska, Harriot Hunt, and also 
our many unsung male allies, including 
S. BurtWolbach. 

Dora Benedict Goldstein '^p is professor 
emerita of molecular pharmacology and 
co-director of the Faculty Mentoring 
Program at Stanford University School of 


hy Stephanie Pincus 

of all the women graduates of our 
class, so imagine 14 different women 
standing before you. We started as 10 
eager, energetic, bright though naive 
"girls," mainly from the northeastern 
establishment schools like Radcliffe, 
Wellesley, Bryn Mawyr, Cornell and 
Barnard, plus me: the ringer from 
Reed College and the West Coast. 
After dropping one and adding five 
women transfer students from 
Dartmouth, we finished as fourteen 
extremely well educated young physi- 
cians ready to stamp out disease, but in 
large part unprepared to cope with the 
vicissitudes of life such as empty 
refrigerator syndrome, clean under- 
wear deficiency and advanced "house- 
hold" support. 

We survived and have now even 
thrived and prospered. Yet we believe 
that by sharing our collective experi- 
ence we can provide insight and guid- 
ance for the ever increasing number of 
women at Harvard Medical School. 

The process that led to this speech 
began shortly before the 25th reunion 
of our class two years ago when I 
perused the list of talks. The same 
pecking order our class had established 
in 1964 was maintained in those pre- 
sentations. Many talented women in 
our class were being completely 
ignored, and furthermore there did 
not seem to be any time or place to 
renew the bonding that had sustained 
us in medical school. 

As usual, my response was to orga- 

nize; in this case I organized a tea for 
my women classmates. Over tea and 
coffee we collectively shared our mem- 
ories of being students. Several themes 
emerged: a profound sense of isola- 
tion; rejection through active career 
discouragement; the delayed recogni- 
tion of an "anti-female" environment; 
and fortunately, perhaps as a benefit of 
age, an appreciation that it was okay to 
be oneself and that we really were suc- 
cessful after all, a phase I'll call resolu- 
tion. I'll now deal with each of these 
areas in more detail. 

Isolation. The theme of isolation 
is common in psychological studies. In 
what I now recognize as a traditional 
masculine pattern of behavioral orga- 
nization, the most emphasis is placed 
on individual achievement, which 
means the model organization is a 
hierarchy (or pyramid, as in a surgical 
training program). This contrasts with 
the interactive nature of feminine 
organizational development, first 
brought to popular view in Carol 
Gilligan's landmark book In a Different 
Voice: "The images of hierarchy and 
web convey different ways of structur- 
ing relationships and are associated 
with different views of morality and 

These theories are especially 
applicable to the Class of 1968. We 
entered medical school in large part 
because we had succeeded in college at 
the game of getting into medical 
school. We then made the transition 
to Harvard Medical School, where 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

Dean Daniel Federman 

typical male hierarchical organization 
is measured by individual achievement. 
Achievers in such organizations often 
feel alone and isolated. In our case, the 
additive effects of the structural orga- 
nization and being women in the tra- 
ditional male club of medical school 
led many of us to feel that we were 
outsiders. If one considers going to 
medical school a ball game, we weren't 
even players on the field. 

We were conscious of being special 
guests; failure was not allowed, but too 
much success was not encouraged 
either. When the women of our class 
had better grades than the men at the 
end of the first year, it was considered 
inappropriate and even wrong since we 
weren't supposed to be equal to the 
men, let alone better. For the majority 
of us the critical factors in maintaining 
inner strength and balance were the 
relationships established either in the 
deanery by those of us in the initial 
entering class, or the camaraderie 
established at Dartmouth prior to 
transfer to Harvard. 

Also on the positive side, we all 
loved learning and the act of becoming 
a doctor; we truly enjoyed our patients 
and helping people. Looking back with 
the benefit of these psychological 
insights, the isolation seems pre- 
dictable and inherent to the organiza- 
tional structure of that era. In informal 
discussions I've had with classmates 
and with many current students, I've 

heard them say that despite their 
increased numbers, many women still 
feel isolated and "not a part of 

Rejection. Rejection through neg- 
ative career guidance was also an inte- 
gral component of our experience. 
Despite our academic success, we were 
not expected to have equivalent career 
aspirations. As we sat at the Four 
Seasons sharing medical school recol- 
lections from the perspective of 2 5 
more years of life experience, previ- 
ously untold stories emerged. One 
classmate recounted being told that of 
course she would put her husband's 
career first and follow him to his 
internship. Another vividly recalls 
being asked, "What makes you think 
you should be a pediatrician?" I was 
told that as a married woman, I 
belonged in a research laboratory, not 
an internship. 

What is most truly remarkable is 
that each of us had until recently con- 
sidered this an individual failure, and 

John Bunker '45, Edmund Harris '45 and his wife, Marilyn 

Autumn 1995 


Paul Rhodes '35 and his wife, Ruth. 

only belatedly has recognized that it 
was a common experience. The only 
classmate who avoided such misguided 
advice was the one who opted out by 
deciding to get married and go to 
England. Nonetheless, because we had 
internalized the more male-oriented 
desire to be at the top of the pyramid, 
we all persevered in spite of the active 

Recognition. Acceptance or 
acknowledgment seems to be our most 
recent state. Retrospectively, we real- 
ize that we had not allowed ourselves 
to perceive the negative. Denial 
allowed us to keep going. 
Unfortunately, some of us extended 
this defensive feeling to our personal 
lives, which lead to difficult and 

destructive personal decisions. Yes, 
there were the petty indignities of hav- 
ing to change in the nurses' locker 
room. But on a larger scale, there were 
the greater deterrents of being told 
that we couldn't get more than a "C" 
in surgery at the PBBH because Dr. 
Moore didn't allow it, to the most dif- 
ficult issue of not seeing anyone who 
resembled us in the "grown-up" role 
of senior physicians. 

From the strength and security of 
our individual personal and profes- 
sional success, we can look back and 
say there were few mentors and no 
easily identifiable paths. We each 
found our own way, and in large part 
we're satisfied with our progress. All of 
us recognize the incredible strength of 

our marvelous medical education that 
has facilitated achievement of our 
career goals. Nonetheless, we can all 
say there has to be an easier, better 
way for the future. 

Resolution. Resolution is the 
stage we are moving toward and 
through. Through trial and error, and 
being past 50, most of us have found a 
more or less comfortable balance. All 
but one of us got married, and the 
majority of us raised children, in addi- 
tion to maintaining an active career. As 
author Judith Lorber has pointed out, 
there is a glass ceiHng in medicine, a 
"subtle process of... colleague boycott 
that does not include women in ways 
that allow them to replace senior 
members of the medical community." 
Our class might argue, however, that 
though this exists, it is in large part 
okay with them. (I might argue other- 

Our success is defined by our inner 
view of ourselves and our recognition 
that we are valuable, successful women 
in addition to being physicians. Like 
other women, we see medicine as only 
part, not the whole. Now, at long last, 
we feel good about ourselves and our 

We include a successful New York 
psychoanalyst, a pediatrician who 
found happiness in western 
Pennsylvania, a pulmonologist who 
teaches medical residents in inner-city 
Philadelphia, an infectious disease spe- 
cialist who recently returned to bed- 
side medicine, one of the foremost 
radiotherapists in the country, a 
respected clinical hematologist who 
had a prior equally laudatory research 
career, a veteran Boston nephrologist, 
two of the premier pediatricians in 
Southern New Hampshire, an innova- 
tive empathetic internist recognized 
for her expertise in medical psychiatry, 
a world renowned author and expert in 
victim trauma and incest, and me, an 
academic dermatologist, chair of a 
department in a state medical school 
and for many years "the token 
woman." There is the gap left by one 
of our group, Donna Gottdeiner 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

Oakes, who died of cancer, though my 
mental image of our class keeps her 
there. Yes, we are proud of who we are 
and what we have done, and Harvard 
should be proud of our accomplish- 
ments as graduates. If it isn't, it is an 
institutional failure, not a collective 
personal fault. 

Our message as a group to the 
alumni and to Harvard is that we com- 
mend you as an institution for facilitat- 
ing entry of women to Harvard 
Medical School. The challenges now 
are to support current Harvard women 
who can serve as role models, and to 
continue to remodel the environment 

so that it is structured to allow and 
reward the feminine style of accom- 
plishment and achievement. The 
changes here at Harvard as well as the 
strongly supportive administration 
make me very optimistic that Harvard 
will rise to these challenges. It is only 
in meeting these challenges that 
Harvard will reap the full rewards of 
having such a large number of success- 
ful and productive women graduates. 

Before closing, I'd like to acknowl- 
edge special thanks to my daughter 
Tamara for giving me the book The 
Female Advantage: Women 'j' Way of 
Leadership; to my son Ben for remind- 

ing me of my place: "My mom is spe- 
cial because she makes me food"; to 
my son Matt for his Mother's Day 
haiku: "she plants yellow flowers in the 
green garden"; and to my husband, 
Allen Oseroff, for his patience, toler- 
ance, love and support. Like most of 
the women in my class, I love my pro- 
fession and my job, but my family is at 
the center of the web that binds these 

Stephanie Pinciis '68 is professor and chair 
of the Department of Dermatology at 
SUNY Buffalo. 

Sylvestre G. Quevedo '75 (left) and Joseph Maloney '75. 

Autumn 1995 

Are Women 

by Gerald S. Foster 

is a bit catchy: Are women different? 
But after thinking about it awhile, I 
said to myself, wait a minute. This is a 
no-win situation. No matter what I 
say, someone is bound to be offended. 
I am tempted to say, no, they are all 
alike, and sit down. 

What can I say? That women are 
nurturers and men are not? That 
because the men on the HMS 

Admissions Committee selected our 
first class with a majority of women 
last year, we are soft on women appli- 
cants? That women are smarter or bet- 
ter? I was discussing this with one of 
my classmates when his wife piped in, 
"What's the big deal? When it comes 
to men, I think I am the equal of many 
and superior to most." 

I can't say any of those things. As a 
minority of one man on a panel of 

women, I'm the one that has to answer 
the question. Are women different? 
How did I let myself get suckered into 
this? I should have taken the advice of 
Fats Waller, a jazz pianist and com- 
poser, who when someone asked him 
to define exactly what jazz was, said, 
"Man, if you don't know, don't mess 
with it." 

So here I am. I think I'll just stick 
to the facts, quote from the literature, 
poll the Admissions Committee, and if 
anybody is offended, I'll blame it on 
the committee. (There's a long tradi- 
tion on the Admissions Committee 
where the chairman takes credit for 
the acceptances, and the committee 
the blame for those rejected.) 

First the facts. Although Harvard 
may have been a bit slow on the uptake 
50 years ago, it wasn't as if women 
were storming the barricades. Back 
then there were 1,100 women appli- 
cants nationally (6 1/2 percent of the 
applicant pool), of whom 450 were 
accepted, 6 percent of the matricu- 

Thomas Waldmann '55 (right) and his wife, Katherine Spreng Waldmann, talk with David Fischer '55 during a break on Alumni Day. 



F "^H 


"% W 






^^^^^^^L ,^^,^^L ^^^^Htt^^^^^hi,.,.,,^,,^?^^^^^! 

/ ."^^^^^H 

'^^ '^P 

■ ^^^ '* m^^^^^^^^r 



>A w§ 


HUrvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

lants. It wasn't until the early 1970s, 
more than 25 years later, that these 
percentages exceeded 10 and they have 
been rising steadily since. Last year 
there were 19,000 women applicants in 
this country and 6,800 matriculants, 
representing 41 percent of each cate- 
gory! This is bound to have an effect 
on how the profession is perceived; it 
already has in some quarters. 

One of our women staff physicians 
at the MGH is married to a nonphysi- 
cian, and her children's pediatrician is 
a woman. She brought her seven-year- 
old son on rounds one Sunday, as 
many of us used to do. She dropped 
him off at the nurses' station while she 
went to see a patient, and one of the 
nurses asked the little boy if he wanted 
to be a doctor when he grew up. He 
said, "No, I'm not a girl." The ulti- 
mate insult to a seven-year-old boy is 
to be accused of being like a girl. 

Our own applicant and matriculant 
percentages followed the national 
trend, at least until last year. Last year 
we had 1,400 women applicants, 41 
percent of our applicant pool. We 
matriculated 89, 53 percent of the 
first-year class. Now I know that our 
admission policies and procedures are 
gender blind without any gender pref- 
erence. How can we explain the suc- 
cess of the women applicants? Is this a 
random fluke? 

No, women are not smarter. 
Academic records are equivalent. 
Women's scores on the science sec- 
tions of the Medical College 
Admission Test were a bit lower, but 
not significantly so. The comments of 
the members of the Admissions 
Committee were strikingly consistent, 
however, and may give a clue. "More 
interesting, more mature, interviewed 
better." One of the members thought 
that men applicants suffered from the 
tight black shoes and necktie syn- 
drome, whereas the women seemed 
more relaxed and certainly more com- 
fortably dressed. 

It's interesting that at both 
Hopkins and Yale a majority of the 
matriculants last year were women. 


Jane Schaller '60 with a friend, Estna Zecevic, chief of pedatrics at the Children's Clinic of Sarajevo. 

When I asked my counterparts at 
those two institutions why they 
thought this occurred, their responses 
were similar. "They interviewed bet- 

Why? Let's see if we can get some 
help from the literature. 

Jill Ker Conway describes her early 
years in Australia in her wonderfully 
written book. The Road from Coorain 
(Vintage Books, 1990). Here was a 
bright, intellectually curious young 
woman striving for an education in a 
society that had different expectations 
for men and women. You could almost 
feel her despair in trying to be taken 
seriously. Of course, eventually she 
was taken seriously, received a PhD at 
Harvard, and became the first woman 
president of Smith College. Although 
the book is about Australia in the 
1940s and 1950s, there is a certain uni- 
versality to these experiences that 
applies even today, even here. 

Three years ago, the Wellesley 
College Center for Research on 
Women issued a report, "How Schools 
Shortchange Girls." This is a major 
study of education that covers a wide 
spectrum of gender inequities and dif- 
ferent expectations. Girls are not 
expected to do as well as boys in math 
and science, yet there is no sex-linked 
math or science gene, and the gender 
gap in these areas can be reduced or 
eliminated by proper encouragement 
and by changing teaching practices. 
There are some studies that indicate 
that girls often learn and perform bet- 

ter in same-sex work groups with less 
social comparison and competition. 
Some of the all-girls secondary schools 
are regarded now as successful models 
for teaching math and science. 

Teachers are not always aware of 
the ways in which they interact with 
students, yet research spanning many 
years consistently reveals that boys 
receive more teacher attention than do 
girls. This pattern persists through 
elementary school and high school. 
Even in preschool classrooms a study 
showed that boys receive more 
instructional time, more teacher atten- 
tion, and more hugs than girls. 

More relevant to this discussion are 
behavioral differences. Schools, and 
for that matter society, have different 
expectations concerning behavior. 
Behavior is rewarded differentially. At 
school, competitiveness, striving to 
excel, and to win are expected and 
even approved behaviors for boys, but 
not so for girls. It is easier for girls to 
exhibit collaboration, compassion, 
empathy and good listening skills. For 
boys these qualities are sometimes 
considered signs of weakness, yet iron- 
ically they are the qualities that we 
value in our school's admissions 

Susan Bailey, the executive director 
of the Center for Research on Women 
at Wellesley, emphasizes that none of 
these behaviors are natural. They are 
driven by societal expectations and 
rewards. She also thinks that schools 
shortchange boys as well because they 

Autumn 1995 


do not encourage them to have good 
listening skills. 

Deborah Tannen's Yon Just Don't 
Understand (Ballantine Books, 1991) 
and John Gray's Men are from Mars, 
Wojiien are from Vemis (Harper 
Collins, 1992) are two best-sellers 
focusing on differences in how women 
and men communicate and relate to 
each other and to the outside world. 
The latter has been on the New York 
Times's best-seller list for 106 consecu- 
tive weeks, so it must be good. 

A bit of paraphrasing. Martians 
value power, competency, efficiency 
and achievement. They experience ful- 
fillment through success and accom- 
plishment. Venusians have different 
values: love, communication and rela- 
tionships. They experience fulfillment 
through sharing and relating. Martians 
go to lunch to discuss a project. They 
view going to a restaurant as an effi- 
cient way to approach food: no shop- 
ping, no cooking and no washing 
dishes. For Venusians, going to lunch 
is an opportunity to nurture a relation- 
ship. On Venus, everyone studies psy- 
chology and has at least a master's 
degree in counseling. Venus is covered 
with parks and organic gardens. On 
Mars, talking about a problem is an 
invitation for instant advice. A Martian 
has no idea that by just listening with 
empathy and interest he can be sup- 

An uncle of a friend lives in Maine. 
For his eightieth birthday his wife 
threw a party inviting neighbors, fam- 
ily and friends. He reluctantly agreed 
to attend. When it was over, she com- 
mented about how wonderful it was 
that so many people who loved him 
came to express their warm feelings on 
his eightieth birthday. She was beam- 
ing. He responded, "It wasn't bad, but 
I still would rather have two bags of 

In You Just Don 't Uiderstand, there 
is a brief passage about gender differ- 
ences and attitudes towards boasting. 
Many women can remember motherly 
or even grandmotherly childhood 
admonitions to "stay in the back- 

ground, never brag, always do your 
best." Women are often reluctant to 
openly display their achievements in 
order to be likable to their peers. Not 
so with men. Self-promoting informa- 
tion is often used in public to achieve 
status. To an admissions committee, 
the latter may be perceived as arro- 
gance, a kiss of death. 

Of course, all men are not pure 
Martian, and women are not pure 
Venusian. Men are certainly capable of 
collaboration and compassion, and 
women certainly can be competitive 
and boast a little. Jacquelyn James, the 
acting director of the Murray Research 
Center at Radcliffe College rightly 
reminds us in an op-ed piece in the 
May 25, 1995 Boston Globe that we are 
not destined by biologic imperative to 
be from different worlds, incompre- 
hensible to each other. Nevertheless, 
women and men still have different 
experiences, and society's expectations 
and rewards are not yet the same. 
Although couched in colorful lan- 
guage, many of the differences in the 
values and behaviors described do 
strike a chord. 

The other side of the equation has 
to do with the values of those who are 
selecting our students. Of course, we 
value scholarship and the students we 
select, women and men, have demon- 
strated outstanding records of acade- 
mic achievement. We value the ability 
to pursue something in depth, whether 
it be scientific research, an honors the- 
sis in English literature, or a commu- 
nity service project of substance. But 
there is more. 

The tutorials that form an impor- 
tant part of our New Pathway curricu- 
lum put a premium on communication 
skills, collaboration and collegiality — 
qualities we look for in our applicants. 
In addition, the practice of medicine is 
in the midst of a revolution. Many on 
the Admissions Committee are 
involved in clinical practice in addition 
to their teaching, research or adminis- 
trative responsibilities. We are being 
buffeted by forces focusing on cost and 
efficiency — ^yet we still value dialogue 

with our patients, good listening skills, 
compassion and empathy. Perhaps 
more than ever, it is important for us 
to teach and champion these values. 

These are not new values. As a 
medical house officer at the 
Massachusetts General Hospital I 
vividly remember Walter Bauer with 
those penetrating eyes of his, insisting 
that his house staff sit down and listen 
to, and talk to their patients. 

And so, my fellow alums (using the 
word "fellow" advisedly in its gender 
neutral form), it's no fluke. My 
premise is that ironically, it seems to 
me as if it's just possible that the col- 
lection of values and behaviors we have 
been discussing have given the women 
that we interviewed last year the edge. 

A final word about gender recogni- 
tion, which is not always as obvious as 
one might think. When we read an 
application, we generally identify gen- 
der by a first name. In our first-year 
class, however, we have Rabiatu, 
Paveljit, Renn, Torunn, Cassis, Udaya, 
and Akshay, among others. That fail- 
ing, we then rely on descriptive pro- 
nouns in letters of recommendation or 
the interview — usually, but not invari- 
ably, definitive. 

A physician in San Francisco in the 
1 960s told of a couple who came to his 
office on their motorbikes requesting a 
Wassermann test, since they were 
planning to get married. For the life of 
him, he couldn't tell which was which. 
Both had long stringy blond hair, gog- 
gles, leather jackets, baggy flannel 
shirts, blue jeans and leather boots. He 
tried to think of a polite way to ask, 
and finally posed the question, "Which 
one of you has a menstrual cycle?" 
One looked to the other and said, "It 
must be you — mine's a Honda." 

Gerald S. Foster 'yi is HMS faculty associ- 
ate dean for admissions and associate clini- 
cal professor ofinedicine. 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

A Qualified 

by Donne lla Green 

When women entered Harvard 50 
years ago, it was apparent that their 
conduct inside and outside the class- 
rooms and hospitals would be scruti- 
nized and that their commitment to 
medicine would be questioned with an 
intensity and depth that had not been 
levied against their male counterparts. 
Yet, women have successfully met 
these challenges, we have carved out a 
place here, and Harvard has changed. 

Perhaps the greatest testament to 
this change is the composition of the 
current first-year class — 5 3 percent 
women. Institutional affirmative action 
initiatives have removed many of the 
barriers that limited access for women 
in medicine and science. Nonetheless, 
constraints still exist. It is clear — from 
life on the inside — that most present- 
day barriers are erected by individuals 
rather than institutions. Individuals 
who through their actions challenge 
institutional commitments to diversity. 

When I was a sophomore in college 
my genetics professor, who was also 
the premedical advisor, told me "that 
as a woman and a minority, I would 
probably get into medical school over 
a lot of quahfied people." At the time, 
I attempted to shrug it off. This pro- 
fessor was notorious for his disdain for 
women attempting to enter science. 
Previously, he had told me and several 
other women that even though we got 
good grades, we weren't really intelli- 
gent — we just studied a lot — and 
would realize this once we went to 
graduate school. 

It wasn't until after I graduated 
from college (with honors) and 
entered HMS, that I realized I haven't 
been able to completely dismiss his 
comments. In fact his statements have 
had a lasting impact on my perception 
of myself and my abilities — more so 
than any exam I have taken or any 
praise I have received from my col- 
leagues or teachers. I don't want you 
to think that I believe that I don't 
belong here, or that I don't feel as 
competent as my classmates, but I can 
say that I often feel that I could have 
done better, worked harder, studied 
more, slept less. 

Like many women and minorities 
who are chronic over-achievers, I am 
motivated not only by my own per- 
sonal goals and ambitions but also by 
the overriding sense that I am con- 
stantly being judged. That my suc- 
cesses and failures reflect not only my 
own abilities, but those of my gender 
and race. Now as a fifth-year MD/phD 
student — the first black woman in my 
department — I am often told that as a 
black woman in medicine the possibili- 
ties are endless, I can write my ticket. 
Every program in the country will be 
recruiting me. 

Those who make these comments 
probably don't think that they are say- 
ing anything sexist or racist. They 
probably believe that they are compli- 
menting me. Yet, to me these com- 
ments are the politically correct 
versions of what my premedical advi- 
sor had said. The underlying message 

is that my gender and race give me an 
unfair advantage, that I can move 
ahead of those who may be just as 
qualified — if not more so — because of 
my underprivileged status. 

When I hear these types of state- 
ments, I often wonder if we live in the 
same world. In their world, sexual and 
racial distinctions serve to elevate 
rather than denigrate. Well, my world 
is different. I have never been taught 
by a black woman MD or PhD. And 
even though we are commemorating 
50 years of women at Harvard Medical 
School, I have only had a handful of 
women lecturers. Harvard is not per- 
fect and in this respect it is not unique. 
The problems confronting women and 
minorities here are replicated through- 
out our society. The discrimination is 
often very subtle, often seemingly 

Nonetheless, as I look back at my 
last five years at Harvard, I can hon- 
estly say that I feel privileged to be 
here. I have never had a more enjoy- 
able educational experience, due in 
large part to the emphasis on student- 
directed learning, which fosters an 
environment where all aspects of acad- 
emic life may be examined. 
Consequently, conversations are fre- 
quently held on group dynamics. 
Racial and gender issues, which 
become evident in small and large 
group settings, are often discussed. 

In tutorials, women have a difficult 
time asserting themselves. We are fre- 
quently talked over or ignored. I have 

Autumn 1995 


heard our ideas characterized as cute, 
while the men in the group are told 
that their ideas are excellent or clever. 
In the few lectures I have seen con- 
ducted by women, lecturers were 
repeatedly inundated with questions 
from the class in a manner that seemed 
to me disrespectfril. I have never seen 
this when men lead lectures, even 
when the class as a whole has had diffi- 
cult}^ understanding the material. 

I hear from my classmates on the 
wards that sexism there is pervasive, 
but usually subtle. Women seem to 
talk more quickly, less frequently than 
their male colleagues. On rounds, male 
attendings often address only the men 
on the team, even when the women 
are more senior. Incidents like these 
may seem benign, just one more obsta- 
cle to overcome on the road to becom- 
ing a physician. But when you consider 
how difficult the road is already, these 
added hurdles can be devastating. In 
fact I believe that even subtle discrimi- 
nation can leave long-lasting conse- 


Blatant acts of discrimination are 
easier to address; the subtle acts are 
much more difficult to get a handle on. 
It is difficult to convince others that 
anything substantial has occurred, and 
perhaps even more damaging, subtle 
acts of discrimination leave those who 
have been wronged questioning their 
own instincts. Are they being too sen- 
sitive? Are they imagining things? 
Tolerance of subtle discrimination fos- 
ters an environment where more bla- 
tant acts can occur. 

So in 1995 what do women in med- 
icine need? We need to be valued as 
much as the men who preceded us and 
the men who are here with us now. 
We need to be treated as though we 
are expected to make significant con- 
tributions in the future. We should be 
mentored, challenged and corrected 
like our male colleagues. Harvard's 
future will be shaped by how closely 
we approach this goal. 

Harvard Medical School has suc- 

cessfully admitted significant numbers 
of women and underrepresented 
minorities at the undergraduate level, 
yet post-graduate successes for women 
and people of color have been limited, 
particularly when one looks at the 
composition of the faculty. Less than 
10 percent of HMS professors are 
women, and less than 2 percent are 
African-American. There are, how- 
ever, signs of change. Last year the 
Faculty Council adopted a "Statement 
of Commitment," which reads: "In an 
ideal world of equitable resources and 
expectations, the Faculty of Harvard 
Medical School would fully reflect the 
diversity of society as a whole. Harvard 
Medical School is committed to 
assemble a faculty that mirrors the 
diversity of our nation." A dean of fac- 
ulty development, William Silen, has 
been appointed to spearhead this ini- 

The statement of commitment and 
the new dean represent an institutional 
pledge to diversity. This pledge is sig- 

Noel Solomons '70 and his friend D'Ann Finley. 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 

nificant in that diversity has been 
defined beyond tokenism. Yet, this 
pledge alone cannot create a gender- 
equal or race-neutral environment at 
HMS any more than governmental 
affirmative action programs can com- 
pletely erase sexism or racism in this 
country. What is also necessary is for 
individuals to commit themselves to 
the principle of diversity as vehe- 
mently as many have committed them- 
selves to the principle of exclusion. 

Those who occupy the upper levels 
of academic medicine must lead by 
example and take the initiative to train 
and mentor women and minorities. If 
every one of us here decided that 
throughout our medical careers we 
would ensure that all of our trainees 
were treated equally, that qualified 
women and minorities were promoted 
fairly, we would come a long way in 
establishing a faculty and academic 
community that more closely mirrors 
our country. 

I know that it can be difficult to see 
one's successor in someone who on the 
surface is dissimilar, who may speak or 
appear differently, but we must. Our 
ability to address the changing health 
needs of an increasingly diverse patient 
population requires as much. All of us 
must share in the training of women 
and minorities. We must create and 
preserve diversity in all disciplines and 
at all levels of medicine. 

With calls for health care reform 
sounding across the nation and gov- 
ernmental regulation looming in the 
future, we must not fail. We must 
ensure that when residency positions 
are cut back, women and other groups 
are not abandoned. As the funding that 
supports positions in academic medi- 
cine and research ebbs, making careers 
uncertain for young investigators, we 
cannot falter. We must ensure that all 
trainees, especially women and minori- 
ties, have sufficient training and sup- 
port to sustain their careers. If we do 
not, we will never assemble a faculty 
that reflects society. 

Affirmative action has become a 
popular scapegoat for many of the 

Edna Flores '75 (left) and Ulder Tillman 75 

country's racial and gender-based 
problems, but I think that we know 
better. People — especially other 
women — often become angry with me 
when I say that I wouldn't be here if it 
weren't for affirmative action. They 
somehow believe that the idea of affir- 
mative action jeopardizes our credibil- 
ity. Well, I know better. 

I know that it is not affirmative 
action that jeopardizes our credibility, 
but racism and sexism. I know that 
affiirmative action does not promote 
unqualified people; it promotes access 
for qualified people who have been 
limited by societal constraints. I know 
that not too long ago women only 
comprised one-quarter of this medical 
school. I know that even with the con- 

stant support I have received from my 
family and others, I would not have 
attended and graduated from Amherst 
College without the successes of those 
who preceeded me — in large part 
because of affirmative action pro- 
grams. Without affirmative action, I 
probably would not have had the 
opportunity to attend medical school 
and I certainly would not have had the 
opportunity to be up here celebrating 
the contributions of 50 years of 
women at Harvard Medical School. 

Donnella Green 'p8 is an MD/pho candi- 
date in the Department of Neurobiology. 

Autumn 1995 



What is it like to attend a class 
reunion when you are 85 years old? 
Here are some of the things that make 
such a reunion a pleasure; anticipating 
what it will be like is part of the fun. I 
expected to see most of the living 
graduates — at least half of them. I 
found that only 1 5 of the 40 left in my 
class got there. (We were 1 3 5 at grad- 

And then I wondered whether 
Boston had changed very much. I 
found that most of the buildings were 
unchanged, with a lot of new construc- 
tion, evidenced by the many cranes at 
work. A two-hour ride on an excursion 
boat on the Charles River basin gave 
us a great view of the area. It was 
impossible to see the famous Bulfinch 

building at MGH because of the taller 
buildings that now surround it. The 
buildings of the medical school are 
unchanged, which is a great thing. 
Newer medical school buildings have 
been sandwiched in between or built 
adjacent to the old — done in a very 
tasteful manner. One thing has 
changed. Climbing the steps up to the 
main building is now a much slower 

The second day was full of delights 
in meeting the returning classmates. 
After so many years, it is a real chal- 
lenge to recognize each one, and I 
learned a technique that proved help- 
ful. This consists of forming a new 
picture in the mind's eye, erasing the 
wrinkles and removing some of the 

acquired fat, and replacing the hair, 
and then you can see who it really is. 
What had not changed was the exu- 
berant spirit of each individual. 

The scientific talks given by the 
eager professors outlined for us the 
vast array of new information that has 
not yet been translated into practical 
use in combating illness. This was 
exciting to hear. Another fresh experi- 
ence was to hsten to the medical stu- 
dent who had finished two years of the 
four-year course and who described 
the New Pathway of learning now 
being employed. This left all of us 
with a feeling that the future of medi- 
cine is in good hands. 

As we said goodbye to each other, 
there was a feeling of great satisfaction 
in having known one another, and yet 
we all realized that the next reunion 
would be five years from now and 
there will not be enough 92 -year-old 
survivors to justify a formal celebra- 
tion. But we all parted with rich mem- 
ories of the glorious days we were 
privileged to enjoy. 

S. Halcuit Moore Jr. '35 




Autumn 1995 



We had a very successful reunion 
of the Class of 1940, highlighted by 
three successful events: the first was 
the cocktail party at Vanderbilt Hall, 
which gave us a chance to get reac- 
quainted and to marvel at how healthy 
we all appear; the next was a wonderful 
dinner at the Harvard Club, which 
lived up to its reputation as a fine host. 
Bob Arnot's son was the after-dinner 
speaker. Bob is rightly proud of him. 
Most enjoyable was the Boston 
Harbor luncheon cruise, blessed by 
fine weather. Many said it was the best 
reunion ever. 

Thomas Paull '40 


George MacDonald, "What a great 
reunion — the best ever." 

Some of us gradually drifted into 
town on Wednesday afternoon and, 
after securing accommodations and a 
good night's rest, went to the 
Thursday morning discussions. The 
balance of the class arrived that after- 
noon, so that by 6:30 PM we were 
ready to attend a magnificent cocktail 
party and meet buddies of 50 or more 
years ago. "You haven't changed a 
bit," was heard everywhere. I was 
impressed that voices hadn't changed. 
Harry Hinckley, in particular, hadn't 
changed and was even smoking the 
same pipe. 

Friday was Alumni Day and we had 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 


The Class of 1950 reunited in 
June to celebrate our 45th reunion. 
The 3 1 class members who came — 
most with spouses and a few with 
friends — attended most of the sched- 
uled events. On Thursday evening, 
dinner at the Boston Harbor Hotel 
began the happy reacquaintance, remi- 
niscing and updating. These animated 
exchanges enhanced the enjoyable 
view of Boston Harbor, as did the deli- 
cious food. There was a lively discus- 
sion of desirable ways to give to HMS. 

The Alumni Day symposium on 
Friday continued this year's celebra- 
tion of 50 years of women at HMS, an 
experience in which we had happily 
participated. We enjoyed further 
exchanges with each other during 
lunch, the class photo, and while 
milling around. That evening we made 
our way to the beautiful home and gar- 
dens of Renee Gelman, who had gra- 
ciously arranged a very lovely buffet 
dinner. Shelden Levin showed us his 
movies of our graduation, and the 

request for an encore reflected the 
near disbelief that we had ever looked 
so very, very young, beautiful and 

We began Saturday as guests of 
Ken and Laurie Graham for cocktails 
at their home in Manchester-by-the 
Sea, a spectacularly beautiful place 
where we had also enjoyed hospitality 
in the past. Then we proceeded to the 
Essex Country Club for a truly superb 
clambake. Although beneath our joy 
there was a sobering awareness of 
health and other personal concerns, 
and a disgruntlement with undesirable 
external impositions on the values we 
cherish in medicine, it was reinforcing 
and heartwarming to meet with each 
other again. 

Gaudeamus Igitur. 

Evelyn Davis Waitzkin '50 

a further chance to talk to friends at 
length between speeches. The banquet 
that night was a great social gathering 
rather than a gastronomic extrava- 
ganza. The entertainment consisted of 
a few speeches about classmates' expe- 
riences. This fun get-together was 
eclipsed on Saturday by the even 
greater hospitahty of Kay and Crapo 
Bullard and the super clambake they 
arranged at their home on Buzzard's 
Bay. They also arranged the beautiful 
weather for the weekend. So next time: 
an even better reunion — the best ever. 
Edward W. Friedman '45 


Autumn 1995 





The reunion weekend began on 
Wednesday evening with an open 
house at Ruth's and my home in 
Winchester. Sixty guests shared fine 
food (all prepared by Ruth) and bever- 
age, and the warmth of the evening 
that emanated from classmates seeing 
each other again set the tone for the 

Eighty-two people attended the 
formal class dinner the following night 
at the St. Botolph Club. We were 
especially pleased to be joined by 

Paula Adelson and Ann Goodman, and 
our special faculty guests, Claire and 
Cliff Barger '43A. Cliff has just taken 
over as chair of the Harvard medical 
Alumni Fund, and gave an account of 
the research being done by HMS stu- 
dents supported by the Class of '55 
fund. Cliff has always taken a special 
interest in the Class of '55, and he and 
Claire were voted honorary members 
of the class. Always the incomparable 
raconteur, our treasurer, Mitch 
Rabkin, reported after a few hilarious 

jokes that the class was solvent. 

Alumni Day on Friday celebrated 
50 years of women in medicine at HMS. 
Three of these women, Georgiana 
Boyer, Eleanor Shore and Marian 
Woolston-Catlin, are graduates of our 
class and attended reunion activities. 

Following the Alumni Day pro- 
gram, we took off for Stage Neck Inn 
in York Harbor, Maine. The inn was 
delightful, the weather spectacular, 
and the camaraderie exhilarating. The 
getaway culminated in a great clam- 
bake Saturday night. 

Miles Shore '54, who has dutifully 
attended all of our reunions with 
Eleanor, was also voted an honorary 
member of our class. 

In my opinion this was our best 
reunion. The genuine pleasure of 
renewing long-lapsed acquaintances 
was abundantly evident. We broke up 
with the somber thought that our next 
reunion will take place at the start of 
the millennium in the year 2000, how- 
ever, everyone who attended the 40th 
intends to be at the 45th! 

Roman W. DeSanctis '55 

35TH , 

The 35TH REUNION of the Class of 
i960 was a success, due in part to the 
increasing compatibility of the class 
and also to the expert assistance from 
Nora Nercessian and her staff in the 
alumni office. 

The weekend began Wednesday at 
a cocktail get-together at Jane 
Schaller's, which was in keeping with 
the emphasis on women in medicine at 
HMS and with the theme of the Alumni 
Day symposium. This was a great 
chance to mingle and rekindle memo- 
ries. Thursday evening saw us enjoying 
dinner at the observatory of the John 
Hancock tower. The outside view was 
obscured by fog but the conversations 
inside were clear. At about 8:30 PM the 
fog lifted, permitting us to identify 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 


The turnout for the Class of '65 
events was very good, with a large 
number of class members coming to 
all three activities. The hot topic for 
the weekend was the intrusion of man- 
aged care into traditional practice 
arrangements. But our class has mem- 
bers on both sides of the issues. 
Richard Cornell became medical 
director of Blue Cross/Blue Shield of 
Massachusetts in the past year and is 
very optimistic about the increased 
economic efficiency offered by the 
managed care system. Glenn Haughie 
continues to be medical director of 

IBM. Cecil Chally, a managing partner 
of a very large medical practice in 
Minneapolis, decided that if he 
couldn't beat them, he would join 
them by buying a large HMO in 
Minneapolis. Charles McCrae, an 
orthopedist in Wyomissing, 
Pennsylvania, is trying to do damage 
control by joining the Pennsylvania 
Blue Shield board. Marcia McCrae is 
leaving the politics to Chuck and 
devoting herself to developmental 

Most of the rest of the class, hke 
Marcia, are trying as best they can to 

continue their medical work, albeit 
anxiously, hoping that they will be able 
to survive to retirement before the 
changes become too drastic. Bob 
Bernstein has an endocrine medical 
practice in New York City and Max 
Cohen continues as a surgeon, special- 
izing in the treatment of melanoma. 
Dick Aadalen is specializing in pedi- 
atric orthopedics in Minneapolis. Tim 
Guiney and Barry Levine are surviving 
in cardiology and internal medicine at 
Massachusetts General Hospital, while 
Stan Wishner is doing cardiology in 
Los Angeles. Pete Reider is a psychia- 
trist splitting his time between Waban, 
Massachusetts and the Cape, while 
Mark Lawrence is doing psychiatry in 
McLean, Virginia. Kenny Ratzan is 
doing infectious disease work in 

Several members of our class are 
actively involved in academics and 
research. Tom Smith, at whose beauti- 
ful home in Weston we had a wonder- 
ful clambake on Saturday afternoon, is 
chief of cardiology at Brigham and 
Women's Hospital. Bob Trelstad, who 
is a professor of pathology at the 
Robert Wood Johnson Medical 
School, has been working on comput- 
continued on next page 

various landmarks. At Alumni Day we 
were treated to a marvelous luncheon 
(minus the keg of beer) and assembled 
for our picture with the youngest fam- 
ily member (Sirgay held his 15-month- 
old long-haired dachshund). 

The usual stalwart reunion 
groupies returned to Weekapaug Inn 
for the weekend. Some things were 
noticeably different from five years ago 
at the same inn: there was less tennis 
played, the crowd was less boisterous, 
the bridge players retired to bed ear- 
lier, and no one "mooned" us from the 
harbor. The group, while in some 
ways diverse, is in other ways very 
close, in fact so close we have a pro- 
posal for the rest of you. Would you 
like to get together in two years? We 

will distribute a memo about this soon 
Please consider it. 

Richard A Kingsbury '60 



The otV^ec 


Autumn 1995 


erizing medical education for pathol- 
ogy for some years. He is now expand- 
ing that work to developing CD-ROMs, 
not only for pathology, but for other 
medical areas as well. Dave McKay is 
one of our few classmates trying to 
instill a holistic view into budding 
medical students by teaching family 
practice at Stanford Medical School. 
Gil Omenn, dean of the School of 
Public Health at the University of 
Washington Medical School in 
Seattie, is doing a variety of public 
health research activities. Elliot 
Gershon continues to do research into 
the genetics of mental illness, particu- 
larly manic depressive illness. Hal Sox 
is at Dartmouth Medical School. 
Clyde Crumpacker is a leading AIDS 

researcher at Harvard's Beth Israel 
Hospital. Morris Fisher continues to 
do neurology in Chicago at Loyola 
University, and is conducting some 
highly specialized research. 

Larry Krenis, who is an anesthesi- 
ologist at St. Elizabeth's Hospital in 
Boston, demonstrated at Tom Smith's 
house that he has gone beyond his own 
musical interests and abilities to the 
identification of a vast array of bird 
sounds. Gene Rosenberg shared that 
he had had a CVA a couple years ago, 
following an atrial fib stimulated 
embolus, leaving him out of commis- 
sion for over a year; he is recovering 
now and feels optimistic although he 
said that he is still having difficulty 
with visual memory, which is compro- 

mising his work in radiology. Bill 
Clark does internal medicine and 
addiction work, with regular continu- 
ing education workshops on the prob- 
lems of developing good 
doctor/patient relationships. John 
McNamara is doing pediatrics in 
Brockton, Massachusetts. 

Everyone at the reunion was very 
conscious of missing Lesley Bunim 
Heafitz. Lesley was chair of the plan- 
ning committee for the reunion and 
had been very active in all of the previ- 
ous reunions. She died this year after a 
prolonged bout with cancer, and we 
were all acutely aware of her absence. 
Her son distributed a wonderful book 
of poetry, which she wrote in the final 
couple years of her life. 

Mai'k Lawrence '6S 



I % 

An enthusiastic turnout of 64 
classmates convened for the four-day 
reunion, starting with a reception at 
Alice's and my home in Weston. The 
highlight of the gathering was the 
Thursday symposium concocted by 
Mike Bennett, Dave Wyler and John 
A.K. Davies; it was given by HMS '70 
graduates, with panels on women's 
health by Jean Emans, Pete Bours and 
Joan Goldberg, and moderated by 
Eileen Kahan; basic science advances 
were presented by Mike Gottesman, 
Andrew Soil and Dave Wyler, and 
moderated by Bob Munford; and per- 
sonal odysseys were told by George 
Fareed, Noel Solomons and Jim 
Herzog, and I moderated. Classmates 
and others joined the inquisitive dis- 
cussions that followed the stimulating 

On Alumni Day, class agents Mike 
Millis and Cary Akins presented our 
class gift, topping $100,000 and grow- 
ing. The morning lectures focused on 
the history of admission of women to 
U.S. medical schools — in particular to 
HMS 50 years ago — and postgraduate 
academic career problems. The shock- 
ing facts were delivered in a tempered 
fashion by women, from a member of 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 


Approximately 30 classmates gath- 
ered for our 20th reunion. In addition 
to attending Alumni Day and the spe- 
cial events commemorating the 50th 
anniversary of women students at HMS, 
we had a chance to spend time with 
each other. Some members attended a 
Red Sox game and a dinner together. 
Even more came to the class dinner in 
the new Medical Education Center 
atrium. We were most fortunate to have 
Betty and Dan Federman '53 in atten- 
dance. Dean Federman provided a most 
informative, stimulating and entertain- 
ing overview of the new curriculum; 
this started a discussion that carried on 
late into the evening. Finally, the picnic 
on Saturday at Larz Anderson Park was 
a fun family event. 
Joseph G. Maloney '75 

that HMS Class of '49 to a current 
MD/phD candidate, and by the dean for 
admissions, moderated expertly in the 
New Pathway manner by the dean for 
medical education. 

An extended opportunity for social 
interaction among classmates occurred 
at dirmer Thursday at Jimmy's, and 
Friday at the Bay Tower Room (with 
dancing). The reunion of our joyous 
class culminated at a clambake on the 
sunny Saturday afternoon in the beau- 
tiful garden at the home of Jim and 
Melinda Rabb. We discovered that the 
passage of 2 5 years had diminished 
neither our camaraderie nor our 

John A.K. Davies '70 


Autumn 1995 



The Class of 1980 celebrated its 
15th reunion with two events: a dinner 
and a picnic. Members came from as 
far as California and British Columbia 
to attend. A small group gathered for 
lunch and the class picture on Alumni 

Day. It was great fun to see old friends 
like Cliff Barger '43A and Dean 
Federman '53. That evening about 40 
people attended dinner at the Harvard 
Faculty Club in Cambridge. Lewis 
First served as toastmaster, wearing a 

Mickey Mouse tie, of course. 

The following day, a group totaling 
over 80 people met under wonderfully 
clear skies for a picnic at my home. 
Steamers, clam chowder, chicken and 
ribs were served. It was a rare opportu- 
nity to catch up with our classmates 
without the pressure of time con- 
straints. From the appearance of the 
group, fertility is not an issue, since 
about half of those attending were 
children. Much to everyone's credit, 
no one looks middle-aged, yet. 

It was a great treat to see each of 
you who attended, and we missed 
those of you who could not. Many 
thanks to all who helped in the plan- 
ning and execution of the reunion and 
the class book. We look forward to 
seeing you at the 20th. 

Denny Lund '80 


About 40 members of the Class of 
1985 attended the reunion activities on 
Friday night and Saturday afternoon. 
Most attendees were from the greater 
New England area, but some had trav- 
eled from as far as California (Adrian 
Ortega, Phil Lane and Melissa Welch 
to name a few). Friday evening a cock- 
tail party was held at the downtown 
Harvard Club. While admiring the 
sweeping views and a beautiful sunset. 

classmates discussed the major events 
of the preceding 10 years. Favorite 
topics included one's chosen medical 
specialty and the number and type of 
children produced. Most of these kids 
were actually present at the family bar- 
becue hosted on Saturday afternoon by 
Eric Schreiber (my husband) and me at 
our home in Lexington. It was a lot of 
fun to see everyone's family and 
exchange baby stories. On the more 

serious side, it was interesting to hear 
how the members of our class (both 
men and women) have coped (and are 
coping) with the dual challenges of 
family and career. A special thank you 
goes to Mike Myers, who served as 
reunion treasurer and participated in 
the organization of the alumni activi- 
ties for a second straight term! Also a 
big thank you to Eva Grubinger and 
the reunion office for helping organize 
the events and the reunion report. We 
look forward to the 15th! 


Harvard Medical Alumni Bulletin 


The Class of 1990 began its fieth 
reunion events on the evening of June 
9 with cocktails and dinner at the 
Cornucopia Restaurant on the wharf. 
A small but enthusiastic group of 
alumni and significant others enjoyed 
what turned out to be an intimate 
gathering. All nine of us had a won- 
derful time. The dining room gave us 
an excellent view of Boston Harbor, 
and the small size of the group allowed 
us to go beyond the usual small talk. 
We reminisced about our years at HMS 
and caught up on events of the last five 
years. It was interesting to hear the 
different paths that our careers and 
personal lives have taken. 

The next day approximately 40 
class members, significant others and 
children enjoyed a lovely outdoor 
gathering at the home of Betty and 
Dan Federman '53. Classmates came 
from as far away as San Francisco and 
Seattle, and there was a healthy 

turnout of those of us who have stayed 
in the Boston area. The weather coop- 
erated fully and allowed us to enjoy a 
sunny, warm afternoon. A collection 
of infants and toddlers rounded out 
the event and added the appropriate 
touch of lightheartedness. 

The next five years promise to be 
exciting and challenging as we face the 
changes going on in medicine and in 
our personal lives. We are looking for- 
ward to seeing all of you at the loth! 

Andria Barnes Ruth '90 




Autumn 199!